I have finally figured out why Americans don’t drink more rose, and it’s not what I thought — that we confuse rose with sweet pink wines like white zinfandel. The real reason? It doesn’t taste like red wine.
How else to account for the odd reviews for the Le Cirque ($11, purchased, available at Spec’s) on CellarTracker, the blog’s unoffical wine inventory tracking software? Several of the writers complained that the wine was too light, and they were exactly right — if they were reviewing cabernet sauvignon. But since the Le Cirque is rose, that’s a good thing. Roses are supposed to be light and refreshing.
In fact, my only complaint about this rose, which is from southern France, was price — I thought it was $9 and not $11 when I bought it. Having said that, it was very nicely done: Bone dry, with lots of cranberry fruit that gave it a pleasant acidity to balance the fruitiness. In this, it is a good example of what a grape like grenache can do for a rose. Pair this with salads and even lightly spicy foods, since there’s enough fruit to handle the spice.
And yes, chill it and drink it on its own and ponder the metaphysical question of why more Americans don’t appreciate rose.