Quarantine Can't Stop You from Drinking Rosé All Summer
Here are 33 rosés to self-isolate with.
This is a very different rosé season from any we’ve had in the past. Because of the pandemic, we’re unable to swarm outdoor café tables and sip together while forking bite after bite of calamari, and any poolside or porch rosé-drinking is happening either alone or six feet away from anyone else.
But that doesn’t mean that you should write off the pink stuff for the springtime. Actually, I’d argue that rosé is exactly what we all need right now, because it’s such a beautiful, delicious reminder that sunny days absolutely do lie ahead.
In the meantime, there’s solace to be taken in popping open a bottle of affordable wine and enjoying it at home. I tasted more than 120 rosés in researching this piece, and was struck not just by the diversity of styles and flavor profiles, but also by the exceptional quality to be found at every price imaginable… and from all over the world, from France, Italy, and New Zealand to California, Oregon, Texas, and beyond.
I’ve included bottles here that are wildly popular and priced to be enjoyed any day of the week, as well as rosés that rise to Grand Cru Burgundy levels of price and collectibility. There is a rosé out there for everyone. Which is a beautiful thing, because these days, all of us could use a glassful of the kind of unselfconscious joy that great rosé so reliably provides.
Here are 33 of my favorites, listed alphabetically.
Anne Amie Twelve Oaks Estate Rosé of Pinot Gris 2019 Willamette Valley ($25)
Coppery in color, with aromas of lemon blossom and jasmine and an interplay on the palate between caramel, dried pineapples and persimmons alongside mineral, tarragon and lime juice.
Belle Glos Pinot Noir Blanc “Oeil de Perdrix” 2019 Sonoma County ($22)
Ripe strawberries and red grapefruits are joined by a nice seam of spice, all lifted by a hint of jasmine in this food-friendly rosé.
Bonterra Rosé 2019 Mendocino County ($16)
A mouthwatering Grenache-based blend, with gobs of red-berry fruit—cranberries and tart red cherries chief among them—joined by bright grapefruit acidity, orange blossoms, and a bracing mineral finish.
Brennan Vineyards Mourvèdre Dry Rosé 2017 Comanche County, Texas ($20)
Mature, savory, and silky, this blend of 85% Mourvèdre and 15% Muscat of Alexandria boasts a carpaccio and tobacco frame to the strawberry, allspice, apple fritter, and hazelnut notes, all edged with a hint of flowers.
Cakebread Cellars “Vin de Porche” 2019 Anderson Valley ($28)
Plush and creamy, with peppercorn-flecked strawberry pastry crème aromas and a velvety palate of red and black raspberries, sun-ripe strawberries, caramel, toasted vanilla, and cinnamon stick. 93% Pinot Noir and 7% Syrah.
Captûre Rosé of Sangiovese 2018 Alexander Valley ($25)
Rose petals, red berries, and orange rind precede a palate of mineral linearity and lemon-lime acidity, kumquats, cranberries, tart red cherries, and a hit of Mediterranean herbs.
Château Gassier “946” Rosé 2018 Côtes de Provence Sainte-Victoire ($31)
Complex, rich aromas of grilled apricots, sweet spice, and pineapple rum cake precede a mature palate that proves a bit of age can be beneficial to the best rosés. Flavors of cobbler shell, cherry pastry crème, flamed orange oils, and a hint of caramelized fennel bulb are silky and charged with energy. Château Gassier’s entire rosé lineup is fantastic.
Château Minuty “281” Rosé 2019 Côtes de Provence ($90)
Remarkable concentration, with cantaloupes, white peaches, seashore brininess, and almond blossom: This smells like Provence in the summertime. Yellow nectarines, white peaches, and citrus blossoms follow through on the palate to a wonderfully structured finish. I also recommend checking out the other three rosé bottlings in the excellent Minuty stable, preferably side-by-side. Grenache, Cinsault, and Syrah.
Château Ste. Michelle Rosé 2018 Columbia Valley, Washington ($15)
Crisp and precise, almost ProvençaI in style, with oranges, melons, red berries, and spice. Widely available and worth stocking up on.
Chehalem Rosé of Pinot Noir 2019 Chehalem Mountains, Oregon ($25)
From the Corral Creek vineyard, yellow grapefruits, hard stone fruit, cranberries, subtle flowers, and cherry pit flavors mark this propulsive, linear rosé whose excellent vein of lime-like acidity slices right through to the finish.
Cuvaison “Small Lot” Pinot Noir Rosé 2019 Los Carneros Napa Valley ($30)
A big bowl of mixed strawberries and red cherries set the table for a vibrant and concentrated palate with flavors of persimmons, tangerines, strawberries, pistachios, and candied rose petals.
DAOU “Discovery Collection” Rosé 2019 Paso Robles ($20)
Yellow peaches and flowers make for a gorgeous nose that gets the mouth watering for flavors of peaches, nectarines, Driscoll’s strawberries, warm apricots, fresh-cut summer melons, a touch of sweet spice, and a finish flecked with honeysuckle. 95% Grenache Noir, 5% Sauvignon Blanc.
Decibel Rosé Crownthorpe Vineyards 2019 Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand ($16)
Floral and lifted, with beautiful aromas of jasmine and honeysuckle joining persimmon and quince, and turning to a palate of generosity and concentration, with a hint of spice to the cantaloupe, white grapefruit, satsuma, and orange blossom.
Domaine Lafage Miraflors Rosé 2018 Côtes Catalanes ($17)
Rich and creamy, with a fascinating mashed apricot note to the guava and goji berries, but mainly this is about the savoriness. Beautifully evolved. Mourvèdre, Grenache Gris, and Grenache.
Domaine Houchart Cotes de Provence Rosé 2019 ($16)
A richer style of Provençal rosé, but it works really well, with ripe watermelons, brambly berries, and sweet spice. Broader on the palate than the nose implies, this is particularly well-suited to richer, oilier fish and dishes like bouillabaisse.
Domaines Ott “BY.OTT” Rosé 2019 Côtes de Provence ($25)
A pure shot of oranges and cranberries on the nose cuts right through to a palate of shimmering minerality. There is real weight and breadth to flavors of oranges and raspberries, and it all resolves with delicate notes of flowers and almonds. I also recommend the Château Romassan Bandol Grand Cru Rosé by Domaines Ott, which is every bit as stunning as you’re heard.
Dusky Goose “Rambeaux” Pinot Noir Rosé 2018 Willamette Valley ($34.99)
The suggestion of flowers leads the way to red fruits and mineral, followed by a concentrated palate of nectarines, kiwi, and a pomegranate-flecked finish.
Guigal Tavel 2019 ($22)
Compressed watermelons, strawberry conserve, and flowers are carried along by a classically tannic structure that promises another several years of aging potential. Pink peppercorns ring through the generous finish that fans out on the palate and is layered with black cherries.
Feudo Montoni Nerello Mascalese Rosé di Adele 2019 Sicilia ($23)
Lifted, generous aromas of orange marmalade, persimmons, and nectarines precede a palate of fruit and subtle saltiness—I love that juxtaposition—with distinctly mineral spice to the nectarines, wild red berries, persimmons, scrubby herbs, and seashore-like brininess.
Gamble Family Vineyards Rosé 2019 Napa Valley ($23)
Delicate, sophisticated, and savory, with watermelons, flowers, and a bit of tarragon preceding flavors of red cherries and raspberries, all leading to pink peppercorns and cranberries on the finish.
Gehricke Pinot Noir Rosé 2019 Los Carneros Sonoma ($29)
Fresh and bright, with flavors of wild strawberries, spiced cherries, and a touch of orange oils on the finish. Very pretty style, and dangerously easy to drink the bottle in one sitting.
Gerard Bertrand “Clos du Temple” 2018 Languedoc Cabrières ($190)
Transporting, effusive aromas of nectarines, tiny wild strawberries, and a vase of Provençal flowers and herbs roll into a palate of intensity, richness, and coiled energy, with lavender, caramel, sea air, just-peeled oranges, oregano, nectarines, and Galia melons. Grenache, Cinsault, Syrah, Mourvèdre, and Viognier.
Imagery Estate Winery Serres Ranch Aleatico Rosé 2019 Sonoma Valley ($27)
Watermelons and strawberry fruit roll-ups (in a good way!) lead to a palate of sweet spice, ripe watermelons and cantaloupes, cherry clafoutis, and rose water, all complicated by notes of almond blossoms and a honeyed finish.
Inman “Endless Crush” OGV Estate Rosé of Pinot Noir 2019 Russian River Valley ($38)
Beautiful, bright pink grapefruit, passionfruit, watermelon, and lemon-lime acidity are layered with rose petals, cranberries, tart cherries, and fresh-picked strawberries. Pure, pristine, and full of energy and soul.
Kutch Pinot Noir Rosé 2019 Sonoma Coast ($26)
Finely detailed aromas of cranberries, tiny fresh strawberries, and mineral are propelled into a palate of power and elegance in equal measure, with delicate spice and a hint of candied rose petal to the Mandarin orange oil, blood oranges, wild strawberries, and cranberries. The mineral finish is flecked with citrus and a delicate floral lift. Concentration and finesse in equal measure.
Masseria Li Veli “Askos” Susumaniello Rosato 2019 Salento ($21)
Beautiful aromas of oregano and scrubby herbs lend a savory edge to the flavors of stone fruit and cantaloupe. Generous, sweet orange flavors resolve in a hint of verbena and red berries on the finish.
Minus Tide Feliz Creek Vineyard Carignan Rosé 2019 Mendocino ($24)
Fantastic acidity and concentration: The mid-palate bursts with bright, wild red berry fruit and a suggestion of flowers, but it’s the finish that remains in the memory most powerfully, with pink peppercorns, jasmine, and orange oils. Keep and eye on this producer: You’ll be hearing more about their wines in the future.
Planeta Rosé 2019 Sicilia ($20)
This blend of 50% Nero d’Avola and 50% Syrah is briny yet lifted by peppercorn spice and red berries, the flavors of yellow nectarines, Meyer lemons, yellow grapefruits, floral peppercorn spice, and slate-like minerality. Gulpable and delicious.
Rusack Vineyards Estate “Boundless” Rosé 2019 Ballard Canyon ($22)
A blend of 50% Zinfandel and 50% Syrah, this boasts summer-melon aromas that follow through to the palate, where they’re joined by delicate, gently floral flavors of papayas, red berries, and rose water.
Stinson Vineyards Rosé of Tannat 2019 Monticello, Virginia ($21)
Fresh cherries and lemons are vibrant and mouthwatering, and joined by black raspberries, fennel seeds, and coriander. Excellent concentration, and very food-friendly.
Treleaven Dry Rosé 2019 Finger Lakes, New York ($18)
Ripe, generous fruit on the red brambly berry end of the spectrum, framed by allspice, and carried along by a lovely palate-coating texture that remains energetic, with yellow peaches, oranges, and lemon oils.
Tres Perlas “Daughters” Renteria Brown Ranch Rosé of Pinot Noir 2019 Los Carneros, Napa Valley ($50)
Satiny, lifted, and light, with a gorgeous aromatic core of papaya and watermelon, and a palate whose delicate vanilla spice and touch of caramel is joined by compressed watermelons, cherry crème brûlée, a hit of caramelized fennel bulb, and more of that sweet spice. All of the profits from this wine are donated to Puertas Abiertas, which helps with emergency relief for farmworkers.
Yamhill Valley Vineyards Estate Grown Rosé of Pinot Noir 2019 McMinnville, Oregon ($18)
Power and concentration to the cherry juice aromas, which set the stage for a palate with subtle tannins and an almost light-red-wine texture that make it uniquely food friendly, especially with its mixed mountain berry flavors. Bring on the grilled sausages.