It just wouldn’t be Rosé Month without Paul Chevalier. And by that I mean it literally wouldn’t be! It’s quite possible that without Paul’s efforts over the past decade, none of us would have ever heard of a little rosé named Whispering Angel, the pink juggernaut that rocked the wine world and essentially become the poster-wine for the #RoseRevolution.
As National Fine Wine Director for Shaw-Ross Imports, Paul’s collaboration with Sacha Lichine, son of Bordeaux legend Alexis Lichine and owner of Chateau D’Esclans, launched this brand and rosé in general into the stratosphere of popularity and changed how rosé wine was viewed around the world.
In our timely interview, Paul explains first and foremost what makes Provencal rosé so unique. He also shares his thoughts on the rise of rosé over the past ten years and speculates as to where it’s headed in the future. He also shares exciting information on Chateau D’Esclans’ latest project which involves a partnership with the glamorous Fontainebleau Hotel in South Beach.
I’m so excited for you to hear my interview with Paul Chevalier so please kick back, pour yourself a glass of something Provencal and pink, and press play for all the details!
RESOURCES MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE:
1.) Our amazing visit to Chateau D’Esclans in Provence.
2.) “The Truth About Rosé” – my Fox News article with more on the Chateau D’Esclans story.
3.) “Wines of the Week” on Facebook LIVE: “The Rosés of Provence”
4.) A glamorous Chateau D’Esclans Rosé Brunch Hosted by Martha Stewart and Chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten at the South Beach Wine + Food Festival.
“Rosé is a delightful wine to serve year round at almost every meal…even breakfast!” – Martha Stewart Last month marked a major annual culinary occurrence here in South Florida, The South Beach Wine & Food Festival. Now in its 15th year, the festival continues to delight the palates of South Florida foodies and has definitely stood the test of time... Read More
“A bottle of white, a bottle of red, perhaps a bottle of rosé instead.” – Billy Joel, Scenes from an Italian Restaurant “Trey, I was like yo, Trey, do you think you could buy me a bottle of rosé?” – Nicki Minaj/Trey Songz, Bottoms Up In the wine world, nothing says Summer like rosé! This coppery-pink elixir is currently being consumed... Read More
The post Summertime Giveaway: Win a bottle of Château D’Esclans Garrus Rosé! appeared first on The Glamorous Gourmet.
“A bottle of white, a bottle of red, perhaps a bottle of rosé instead.” – Billy Joel, Scenes from an Italian Restaurant
“Trey, I was like yo, Trey, do you think you could buy me a bottle of rosé?” – Nicki Minaj/Trey Songz, Bottoms Up
In the wine world, nothing says Summer like rosé! This coppery-pink elixir is currently being consumed by the case in hot spots ranging from East Hampton to St. Tropez. It’s crisp, refreshing and incredibly versatile as demonstrated by mentions from artists ranging from Billy Joel to Trey Songz. In keeping with the season, we’re giving away a very special bottle of rosé this month to one lucky winner, the Château D’Esclans Garrus Côtes de Provence Rosé – a $100 value!
This wine is from one of my favorite Provençal producers, Château D’Esclans (for more about them and our visit, please click here) and is the crown jewel of the Chateau’s portfolio. Proprietor Sacha Lichine has elevated the “glamour factor” of rosé, taking it from an “everyday wine” to something exceptional with his artisanal approach. The grapes for Garrus come from very old Grenache and Rolle vines which produce concentrated fruit with lots of flavor. The juice undergoes fermentation in both new and second year demi-muids and Burgundian style bâtonnage occurs twice weekly for 10 months. The result is a full-bodied rosé with heady aromas of strawberry, ginger and spice. On the palate, flavors of red berries, vanilla and clove are framed by ever so balanced tannins and acid. This sublime bottling will pair with dishes ranging from pan seared scallops to filet mignon or…nothing at all!
To enter the giveaway for the Château D’Esclans Garrus Rosé, simply leave a comment at the end of this post and tell us your favorite Summer vacation spot. From your own backyard to Martha’s Vineyard we want to know which place you love to escape to this time of year. Entering the giveaway is that simple and for additional chances to win, you can (1) sign up to receive our weekly newsletter by clicking here and/or (2) leave a comment on another one of our blog posts. Each additional comment will count as one additional chance to win.
This giveaway is open to anyone 21 years of age or older who lives in the continental United States and ends Wednesday, August 5, 2015 at 8:00pm EST when a winner will be randomly drawn. The lucky winner will be contacted immediately to arrange expedited shipping and the cost of shipping is included as part of the contest.
Best of luck and remember, you have to play to win so leave your comment now!
I hope your Fourth of July festivities were nothing short of fabulous and that your month is off to a great start! I hope you enjoyed exploring our wine recommendations for the holiday weekend and it is with distinct pleasure I present to you our latest Wines of the Week, the rosés of Château D’Esclans. Provence is widely considered the birthplace... Read More
The post Wines of the Week: The Provençal Rosés of Château D’Esclans! appeared first on The Glamorous Gourmet.
I hope your Fourth of July festivities were nothing short of fabulous and that your month is off to a great start! I hope you enjoyed exploring our wine recommendations for the holiday weekend and it is with distinct pleasure I present to you our latest Wines of the Week, the rosés of Château D’Esclans.
Before I introduce this fabulous producer from the South of France, a little more on the topic of rosé wine. As a (self-appointed) Ambassador of this most enjoyable vinous genre, I recently included a dry rosé in my monthly wine club shipment and to my surprise, I heard from a few clients asking why I would include a “pink” wine in the monthly shipment. It was then, my fellow wine lovers, I realized my job as rosé Ambassador was not done! Not only are pink wines “acceptable,” but a dry, Provençal-style rosé is the quintessential Summer wine and should have its place in every wine lover’s repertoire. But in case you’re not convinced, let me clarify even further.
Provence is widely considered the birthplace of dry rosé and continues to be the benchmark against which all quality rosé is measured. These wines have a few key distinguishing characteristics, in addition to being (1) pretty affordable they are generally (2) light pink in color with (3) delightful aromas of red berries. On the palate, (4) they are delightfully crisp, refreshing and fruity but this style of rosé has (5) a distinctly dry finish (dry meaning not sweet). Rosé wines are perfect for slaking your thirst on a hot Summer day at the beach or cruising the Cote d’Azur on your mega yacht – depending on how you roll! These wines are not to be confused with the dark pink, cloyingly sweet, pink or “blush” wines you (or I) may have been a fan of in college. The two are stylistically and theoretically very different. As a function of where they’re from, Provençal rosés also seem to have an inherent “Glamour Factor” and are typically consumed in tony resort locations around the world including the Hamptons, Nantucket and, of course, the South of France!
While Provençal rosé is generally considered an affordable, uncomplicated yet enjoyable wine, the rosés of Château D’Esclans are unique in the sense that they offer that experience…and much, much more. The wines of this Château represent a paradigm shift in the way rosé is made and enjoyed, offering four distinctly different wines at four distinctly different price points. It took a unique man with an inspired vision to accomplish this feat. Owner Sacha Lichine (pictured above right), son of Bordeaux legend Alexis Lichine, acquired Château d’Esclans in 2006. His roots had been firmly established in Bordeaux but following his father’s passing and subsequent sale of the family’s fourth growth Bordeaux estate, Château Prieuré Lichine, Sacha decided to make the leap from Bordeaux to rosé, a decision that definitely surprised some. To accomplish his goal of crafting a rosé like no other, Sacha knew he needed a winemaker that had spent his career on the forefront of vinous innovation, a winemaker just like Patrick Léon.
Patrick Léon (pictured above) is a Bordeaux native with an extensive education in Oenology. Even if you’re not familiar with his name, you’re probably familiar with his work. In addition to working with Sacha’s father, Patrick spent the majority of his career as Managing Director for Baron Phillipe de Rothschild. This position required him to oversee technical departments including the company’s vineyards and winemaking facilities for such well-known names as Chateau Mouton Rothschild in Bordeaux, Opus One in California, Almaviva in Chile, as well as other wines in the company portfolio. Needless to say, Patrick Léon was just the man for the job!
Château D’Esclans is located in the Department of the Var, approximately fifteen miles northwest of the ancient Roman city of Frejus on the Mediterranean coast. The first traces of the chateau’s site date back to Gaullist times during which its location served as a lookout point to spot intruders coming by boat into the Gulf of Frejus. The chateau’s cellar structure or foundation (known today as the oldest in the region) housed an original Chateau that was given by the Comte de Provence to Gérard De Villeneuve, in 1201. The current chateau, inspired by Tuscan Villa design, was built during the mid 19th century. The Château has 108 acres of vineyards while the total property consists of 659 acres. The primary grape grown here is Grenache followed by Vermentino (aka Rolle). Other grapes include Cinsault, Merlot, Mourvèdre, Syrah, and Tibouren. The château is known for its old Grenache vines which produce grapes that offer greater concentration of flavor than younger vines. As the elevation of the vineyards increases, so do the age of the vines and the highest elevated lot consists of 90 year old vines.
We had the opportunity to visit Château D’Esclans on a gloriously sunny day during harvest last September. As you might expect, the property is beautiful and in addition to the vineyards and winemaking facility, features a stately Tuscan Villa surrounded by a rolling green lawn studded with oak trees. As we arrived for our visit the sun was filtering through the canopy of trees while Golden retrievers frolicked in the fountains chasing koi – truly a storybook setting! As we toured the state of the art winemaking facility it was clear harvest was in full swing – the excitement in the air was palpable! Crates of freshly-picked grapes were lining up to be processed while the thrum of the sorting table was like caffeine for the ears. The temperature-controlled facility had all the latest technology including an optical sorter, state of the art lab and oodles of oak barrels for the more expensive cuvées. Achieving the Château’s 1.5 million bottle annual production is no easy feat and since the inaugural 2006 vintage, when total production consisted of 100,000 bottles, Château D’Esclans has certainly come a long way! After the tour we enjoyed a comparative tasting of the Chateau’s 2009, 2011 and 2012 Les Clans and Garrus rosés from Jeroboam (3L bottles). Historically, rosés have been intended for immediate gratification and haven’t really been considered worthy of aging. The Les Clans and Garrus however were crafted with the intention of aging with grace. The 2009 vintage of both wines held up beautifully and while the fruit was not as intense as the younger wines, they had rewarded the wait with more complexity, refinement and depth of flavor. As we wrapped up the tasting we were invited to stay for the Harvest Lunch which we immediately accepted. Needless to say we were pleased to learn Sacha Lichine, Patrick Léon and those bottles of Les Clans and Garrus would be joining us for lunch!
2013 Château D’Esclans Whispering Angel Rosé ($22): the entry level Château D’Esclans rosé is a blend of grapes grown from some of the most choice land in the surrounding region of La Motte en Provence. It consists primarily of Grenache, Rolle (aka Vermentino), Cinsault, Syrah and Tibouren. Both free run and pressed juices are vinified entirely in stainless steel and bâtonnage, or lees stirring, is performed twice weekly.
This wine is a crystalline pink in color with delicate aromas and flavors of bright citrus and red berries. It is crisp and refreshing on the palate with a snappy, clean finish – delightful!
2013 Château D’Esclans Cotes de Provence Rosé ($40): the second wine in the Château’s portfolio is made from grapes grown in the Château d’Esclans vineyard, consisting primarily of Grenache and Rolle. It is made entirely from free run juice which is partially vinified in demi-muids (600 L barrels) as well as stainless steel with a temperature controlled maceration.
This wine has a pale pink color and mineral-tinged aromas of white peach and red berries. On the palate a creamy texture accompanies pleasant cherry and strawberry flavors with a hint of lavender and spice. This wine most closely approximates a true Provencal rose and is a wonderful accompaniment to food such as charcuterie, salads and shellfish.
2012 Château D’Esclans Les Clans Rosé ($75): This is where the departure from traditional rosé really begins! The grapes for Les Clans are selected from old vines consisting primarily of Grenache and Rolle. This wine is made from 90% free run juice and 10% first slight pressing. Alcoholic fermentation takes place in new and second year demi-muids. Burgundian style bâtonnage occurs twice weekly for ten months to enhance creaminess and complexity.
This wine has fragrant aromas of red berries, white peach and spice and dazzles on the palate with layers of strawberry, cherry, spice and hint of lavender. The lovely complexity accompanies a luxuriously creamy mouthfeel followed by a long, lingering finish. This wine would pair beautifully with everything from rich seafood dishes to roasted chicken!
2012 Château D’Esclans Garrus Rosé ($99): the grapes for Garrus, the jewel in the Château‘s crown, are selected from vines grown from parcels bearing old vines consisting of Grenache and Rolle. This wine is made from 90% free run juice, and the alcoholic fermentation takes place in both new and second year demi-muids. For 10 months Burgundian style bâtonnage occurs twice weekly.
A beautiful rose petal pink color, this wine has heady aromas of raspberry, ginger and herbs. On the palate this full-bodied rosé exhibits flavors of red berries, vanilla and spice framed by tannins and acidity which synergize beautifully as the wine opens up. This wine is dynamic in the glass and very food-friendly with the potential to stand up to dishes with some heft including beef, lamb or other grilled meats.
Lilly Pulitzer Dress? Check. Nantucket red pants? Check. Great friends, music and food? Check.
What’s missing from this idyllic Summer soirée? A bottle of crisp, refreshing rosé wine of course! If your Summer celebration is minus the most important accessory of the season, The Glamorous Gourmet is here to help. Summer is the perfect time to enjoy these wines which are refreshing, flavorful and extremely food friendly. Here are four wines that will definitely have you thinking pink this Summer.
But first, a word about rosé. While rosé is considered de rigueur in the tony Summer destinations such as The Hamptons and Saint-Tropez, many wine lovers in the US are reluctant to embrace “pink wines” and are missing out on some of the season’s most stylish vinous offerings! Here’s the skinny on how to tell the good pink stuff from the uh…not so good. Provence has long been considered the birthplace of rosé and is largely the benchmark by which rosé is measured. Provençal rosés are classically light pink in color and dry in style with a refreshing, food friendly acidity. These wines differ dramatically from White Zinfandel and “blush” wines which are mass produced and loaded with sugar, resembling fruit punch more than any wine I can think of. In order to avoid contact with the latter when purchasing or ordering wine in a restaurant specify you’d like a “dry, Provençal-style rosé” which are available at a variety of price points. With so many great values out there – why settle for less?
One of my favorite producers of rosés is Chateau D’Esclans, whose wines hail from the Cotes de Provence AOC in France. This estate produces four different types of rosé which are each very different in character; for more detail on all of Chateau d’Esclans’s four offerings, please click here. One of my favorites of the four to enjoy during the Summer (it’s very hard to chose just one!) is the 2011 Chateau D’Esclans Côtes de Provence Rosé,$30, which most closely represents a classic rosé from this region. This wine is a blend of 85% Grenache and 15% Rolle from 30-80 year old vines that is partly vinified in stainless steel as well as demi muids which gives the wine its complexity and structure. This rosé is a beautiful, light pink color with aromas of red berries and spice while on the palate, the delightfully creamy mouthfeel is accompanied by flavors of strawberry, cherry and white pepper. Ah, Summer in a glass!
Due north of Provence, high up in the hills near Gigondas in France’s Rhône Valley, is a relatively new wine producer called Chêne Bleu. Named for the estate’s giant blue oak tree, the estate was purchased in 1992 by Xavier Rolet who, together with his wife Nicole, sister Benedicte Gallucci and bother-in-law Jean Louis Gallucci spent the last 10 years renovating a medieval property and restructuring 400 year old vineyards, located at 1,700 feet elevation, to create a state of the art, boutique winery that is definitely a family affair. After 15 years of renovations, 2006 marked the first vintage from the estate, with only a few wines produced from the classic Rhone grape varieties – lucky for us, rosé was one of them! The 2012 Chêne Bleu Rosé, $25, is a blend of Grenache, Syrah and Cinsault with aromas of strawberry, rhubarb and a hint of lavender. On the palate, fresh red berries and a hit of citrus accompany a refreshing acidity and mild tannins.
Now, how about a delicious rosé from the USA? The 2012 Copain Tous Ensemble Rosé, $22, is made from 100% Pinot Noir from the Anderson Valley in Medocino County, California. The Anderson Valley is becoming more widely recognized for producing quality wines crafted from the Pinot Noir grape and why should rosé be any exception? Copain’s winemaker, Wells Guthrie, has long been enamored of French wines, particularly those from the Rhone Valley. After living there for a time and learning from some of the best he now creates a beautiful portfolio of wines firmly rooted in California yet with a distinct European influence. The Copain Tous Ensemble Rosé has a beautiful salmon pink color and enticing aromas of red berries, spice and a touch of minerality. On the palate, notes of strawberry, cherry and citrus zest are accompanied by a lovely, refreshing acidity and dry finish.
Hailing from California’s Central Coast is the delightful 2012 Cline Cellars Mourvèdre Rosé, $12. Mourvèdre is a relatively rare grape in California and Cline makes four different styles of wine from it, including this lovely rosé. The grapes come from Cline’s historic Oakley ranch in Contra Costa County where the century-old vines grow in the deep sandy soil and the cool winds blow off the San Joaquin and Sacramento Rivers allowing the grapes to retain their bright acidity. This wine is made as a Blanc de Noir or “white of a red grape,” in the style of a white wine. The skins are removed by pressing before fermentation begins and the wine extracts a small amount of color, and a little of the tannin, from the red grape skins. On the nose, aromas of pomegranate and cherry are balanced by a delicate hint of sweet anise while on the palate, flavors of raspberry, cherry and vanilla notes are very appealing.
While rosé is perfect for sipping on its own on a hot Summer day, these wines are also incredibly food friendly. They pair well with a variety of cuisine especially grilled or smoked salmon, charcuterie or even dishes such as roasted chicken. A classic French dish that pairs particularly well with rosé is Pan Bagna, a sandwich that consists of tuna, Kalamata olives, fresh tomatoes and hard boiled eggs to name just a few ingredients. It’s much like a Salade Niçoise just served as a sandwich, please click here for the delicious recipe.
I hope you have a chance to enjoy these wines during your Summer adventures. To purchase any of the above rosés, please visit The Wine Atelier by clicking here.