In search of consensus (and a recommendation or two), I turned to the Hamptons, that impossibly chic collection of towns on eastern Long Island where people have been known to spend more than $100,000 for the privilege of a single month's stay, a place where summer is not merely a season but a way of life. Here, I thought, I'd surely find an answer.
I began with an East Hampton wine shop, Wines by Morrell. The manager, David Mikan, readily informed me that his clients were drinking dry full-bodied rosés, preferably from the south of France: "Rosés from Provence and Bandol are big sellers in the summer, particularly from producers like L'Estandon, Domaines Ott and La Bastide Blanche. Domaines Ott is especially hot among the Hollywood set." (Steven Spielberg, Barbra Streisand, Alec Baldwin and Kim Basinger are among those who have spent summers in the Hamptons.)
The advertising impresario and Hamptons restaurateur Jerry Della Femina agreed. "A glass of Domaines Ott rosé, or even a bottle or two, with a lobster salad for lunch is my idea of a perfect summer afternoon." However, he noted, it was a choice that was subject to change with the setting of the sun: "I don't think I've ever drunk a rosé after dark."