10 Californian rosé wines that give Provence value for their money



Summer is in full swing, and what better than a chilled glass of rosé to keep the heat away?

While Provence may be the spiritual homeland of rose wines, California is giving the southern France region a hard time with a wide array of quality-focused examples. So the next time you need a refreshment, turn to Cali for your rosé.

Caraccioli 2020 Escolle Vineyard Rosé from Pinot Noir (Santa Lucia Highlands); $ 25, 94 points. This bottling begins with crystalline aromas of strawberry, pink lemonade and rose petal with a lively, clean and delicious nose. There’s a fantastic sizzle on the sip, where a chalky take frames the flavors of poached strawberry, pluot and rose petal. –Matt Kettmann

Hartford Court 2020 Rosé from Pinot Noir (Russian River Valley); $ 30, 94 points. Made primarily from grapes grown at Fog Dance Vineyard, a vineyard in its own right, this memorable and delicious wine is light in color and delicately inviting with tangerine, peach and strawberry. Fermented in stainless steel, it remains crunchy on the palate with just a hint of rich orangeicle on the finish. editors Choice. –Virginie boone

A tribute to Grace 2020 Santa Barbara Highlands Vineyard Rosé de Grenache (Santa Barbara County); $ 25, 93 points. A very pale pink tint in the glass, this bottling opens with aromas of rose petal, honeydew and wet slate. The palate is extremely tight and catchy, like licks and seashells, while flavors of red apple and rose petal float to the finish. –MK

Car Rouge 2020 Rosé de Pinot Noir (Côte Sonoma); $ 28, 93 points. Crunchy red fruits dominate in this lovely wine, which offers great depth of flavor and nuance. Mandarin and blood orange characteristics add continued freshness and unmistakable appeal. –VB

Joel Gott 2020 Rosé (Central Coast); $ 16, 91 points. For a widely available rosé, that’s a steal, starting with aromas of clean chewing gum, strawberry and chalk. There’s a firm tension on the sip, where the ripe watermelon and strawberry flavors will appeal to the masses, but the chalky texture will keep experts enthused as well. editors Choice. –MK

Joseph Jewell 2020 Slusser Vineyard Rosé from Pinot Noir (Russian River Valley); $ 24, 91 points. Fruity and layered with waves of raspberry, strawberry and watermelon, this light and crisp wine offers a vibrant flavor and texture. Dried herbs and a hint of lemongrass add complementary flavor and delight. –VB

McKahn 2020 Rosé de Grenache (Shenandoah Valley); $ 26, 91 points. A pale pink color, seductive aromas of Ruby Red grapefruit and light, fresh and crunchy flavors give this light-bodied wine charm and grace. Its notes of raspberry and mint are surprisingly concentrated and persistent. editors Choice. –Jim gordon

Dancing Crow 2020 Rosé de Syrah (Lake County); $ 20, 90 points. This attractive and well-balanced wine is light salmon in color, offers fresh aromas of raspberries and peaches and very ripe but tangy flavors on the palate. –JG

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LangeTwins 2020 River Ranch Vineyard Aglianico Rosé (Jahant); $ 22, 90 points. Generous fruit flavors and a refined texture are complemented by a lively, underlying acidity in this tasty, well-balanced and harmonious wine made from an Italian grape. –JG

Noble Vines 2020 515 Rosé (Central Coast); $ 12, 90 points. There’s a brilliant combo of chewing gum and cotton candy that kicks off the nose of this bottle, but a hint of white ash adds a more serious touch. Flavors of orange blossom and ripe nectarine emerge on the sip, linked by a stony and chalky frame. Best buy. –MK

Posted on June 30, 2021


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