PHILLY.COM – Summer rosés of substance

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Two months ago, I wrote a column featuring three breezy rosés for spring at $15 or less.

But with plenty of warm-weather sipping still ahead, I’ve been reminded there are some more substantial rosés with the depth and complexity to handle a wide variety of food and also merit higher prices.

The gran reserva rosados from López de Heredia in Rioja are my all-time favorites. But the Provencale beauties from Sacha Alexis Lichine’s Château D’Esclans are not far behind.

From super-luxe Les Clans ($78.99) and Garrus ($87.99) to popular hit Whispering Angel ($19.99), these strikingly pale pink blends with deceptively vivid flavors have rightfully earned a following.

The chateau’s newly rebranded estate wine, Rock Angel ($31.99) is a smart middle ground.

Made from a blend of red Grenache and white Rolle (also known as Vermentino), with a hint of ancient Tibouren, the 2014 is the embodiment of summery grace and elegant depth, with fresh fruit on the nose (orange peel, red berries) woven smoothly into a quenchingly dry frame of herbal notes and texture with a delicately bitter, pithy finish.

– Craig LaBan
Château D’Esclans Rock Angel Côtes de Provence Rosé 2014, $31.99 (code 47540) in Pa.

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