Patio weather calls for rosé wines

This June, taste ro the Provence way

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British Columbians are seeing a lot more pink in their wine glasses these days.  Culinary pleasure-seekers are flocking to farmers markets and patios to seek great cuisine, sun and relaxation.  And, when they stop to enjoy a glass of wine, they have been increasingly choosing refreshing, delicious dry rosé wines, notably those from Provence in the south of France.

Rosé wine consumption is growing not only in B.C., but also on a worldwide basis, likely based on the fact that while rosé goes perfect with sunshine, this versatile wine style is no longer viewed as just a seasonal sipper.  Across Canada, volume sales of rosé have almost doubled from 2004 to 2013, according to the Association of Canadian Distillers, and is projected to rise by seven per cent in the next two years.  In B.C. alone, the Provence rosé category has grown by a whopping 44.5 per cent over the past 12 month.

“With its incomparable finesse and subtlety, Provence is the benchmark for rosé and every year the category is showing strong growth in British Columbia.  B.C. rosé drinkers clearly enjoy it and find it a great match with local cuisine,” says Barbara Philip, MW, portfolio manager, Wines of Europe, B.C. Liquor Distribution Branch.

France is a world leader in the rosé production.  Provence today represents 40 per cent of the French production of all rosé AOP and five per cent of the world production of rosé wines.  It is also the only region in the world that specializes in rosé and dedicates 88.5 per cent of its production.

Provence is the oldest French wine region.  Its rosés are dry and a blend of at least two varieties.  The most common are Cinsault, Grenache, and Syrah.  The blend is a perfectly mastered technique in Provence; it reveals the terror and is a mark of quality.  Because of this, consumers have plenty of fresh and delicious options in the $15-$35 range.  These versatile wines are ideally paired with wild Pacific salmon, fresh spot prawns, Asian cuisine, local seasonal produce, and much more.

“What is great about adaptable, dry rosé is that it’s often the best wine for food, bringing red wine structure with white wine freshness to easily bridge meat, fresh and ethnic cuisine,” says DJ Kearney, drinks editor, Vancouver Magazine.

A number of BCLDB stores across the province are showcasing rosé wines for the month of June.  Check your local store for more details.

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