Thank goodness that rosé has lost its rather tawdry reputation. Long seen as the low-budget obsession of a down-market party girl, it loitered on the furthest reaches of the merchants’ shelves. I would bet that a high proportion of those reading this will have started out in their wine drinking careers as imbibers of that ubiquitous fluid Mateus rosé. And why not? It helped wean several generations off fizzy pop. As long as it was a stepping stone to something more serious, it was performing a welcome service.
In the 21st century, rosé wine has become something more than acceptable. A Year in Provence has opened the portal onto a world of pale, onion skin-coloured wines that urge one to have another crack at bouillabaisse. From Bordeaux come the clairettes: those deep, almost ruby wines that are almost more red wines than pink ones and from which comes the English word claret. Ah. And pink champagne, for when the celebration needs that extra something…or for when the wooing’s taken a serious turn!
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