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Brilliant blush wines that will make your summer sizzle

Fri 02 Jul 2010 10:35

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Rosé has steadily become one of our favourite tipples and the fruity wine is especially popular during the hot summer months.

Supermarkets now have shelves packed full of all sorts of varieties from all over the world which is a huge change from just a few years ago, when you’d be lucky to come across two or three examples.

The Rosé phenomenon has even sparked off whole new categories of drinks, such as Rosé Port.  Until 2009 there was no such thing as Rosé Port, only white, red and tawny. It took a change in the wine laws of Portugal to allow Port producers to join in the fun, and now there are several pink Ports on sale amongst the sea of Rosé wines.

If you’d like to try out some tasty blush wine, but don’t know where to start, here are three of wine connoisseur Tom Cannavan’s favourites to give you some ideas:

1. Yali, Wetland Merlot Rosé 2009, Chile. £6.49 from Majestic
The wine is creamy but bright and clean as a whistle, and the fruit is lovely - very juicy and ripe, with a richness to the flavour and texture. There's the merest hint of sweetness, but is overall dry and food-friendly.

Even better, a small contribution from every sale of this wine goes to the Wetland and Wildfowl trust, as the vineyards for these grapes lie very close to an endangered wetland in Chile.

With fruity flavours of watermelon and strawberries, this rosé goes really nicely with cold chicken, cold meats and prawn cocktail.

2. Fresita, Sparkling wine with Patagonian Strawberries, Chile, £6.99-£7.75 from Henderson Wines, Peckham & Rye, Ellies Cellar and House Of Menzies
Made with an all-natural infusion of Patagonian strawberries in a sparkling base of Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Moscatel, this deep crimson pink wine has lifted aromas of strawberries and a a touch of patchouli, leading onto a palate where the strawberry flavour persists but sits nicely within quite a crisp, elegant acidity.

Hints of strawberries and flowers make this a brilliant summer pick which matches up very nicely with hors d’oeuvres and fruity desserts. It only has 8 per cent alcohol too.

3. Croft, Pink Port, Portugal, £9.99-£10.49, from Tesco, Sainsbury's Co-op and Morrisons
Made from classic Port grapes the nose is extremely attractive with bright, creamy raspberry, cherry and Sarsaparilla notes, and no sense of the alcohol.

On the palate, served well-chilled as recommended, the intense red fruit floods pleasingly across the tongue. It’s also delicious served topped up with soda and ice, or as the base for a summer fruit cocktail (get more ideas from www.croftpink.com)

With tasting cues of raspberries and chocolate, this pink port is perfect as an aperitif or served alongside fruit tarts or a summer pudding. Why not try The Hour chef Sue Lawrence’s summer pudding along with this wine?

 

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