Sparkling rosé all Spring
I was asked to lead a team for a management consulting company for a wine tasting last month with wines provided by WTSO.com (Wines 'til Sold Out). I walked the group through a really nice Sparkling rosé which rang in under $20 and was quite spectacular.
This Sparkling rosé by Emile Bockel is from the northeastern side of France close to the border of Germany & Switzerland in a town named Alsace. You may recognize the region Alsace from a label if you’re a Pinot Gris or Riesling drinker, this region is very well known for those wines.
Sparkling wines are almost always made from Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Meunier but this one is 100% Pinot Noir per Alsacian rules - France has a lot of regulations across their regions which keeps the quality consistent and high. Since this is a rosé, it gets this nice salmon color from the skins of the pinot noir grapes during fermentation, usually kept in there a matter of a day or two then are removed while fermentation continues. Unlike still wines, you do not swirl Sparkling because you’ll swirl the bubbles right out of it and you really have to watch yourself cause I catch myself all the time. On the nose I got a lot of berries like strawberry and raspberry with a butter note but not a tremendous amount of bread and croissant like some of the big champagne houses you’ve might’ve had. And on the palate it’s dry and crisp with a nice acidity and the berry flavors hold true.
I find bubbles a very versatile wine, it’s great with and without food. I personally like to start off with bubbles well because it just sets the mood. You hear that pop and boom, instant smiles. If you really want to take it up a notch, saber the bottle. Has anyone ever done that? You don’t need a real saber, you can use a metal knife which is my favorite party trick. You tube it for an instructional, it’s super easy. Ok now pairings, the short answer is this will pair great with ANYTHING. Fish, chicken, pasta and since so many other styles of wines are not complementary to sweet things, I also like to finish dinner parties with bubbles during dessert.
A few hints for you, if you are looking for bubbles but don’t want to pay the Champagne price let’s say to use for a mimosa or aperol spritz, go with a Cava which is a sparkling from Spain. It’s made the traditional champagne method and is a great value like many wines from Spain, unlike France and Italy. I prefer cava over prosecco because it's more of a cousin to champagne, less sweet than Prosecco can be.