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K&L Staff Recommendations
One of our most popular rosés, this fresh and balanced wine comes from one of our favorite co-ops in the south of France. It's a blend of Syrah and Grenache grown in volcanic soils in the heart of the Languedoc. With aromas and flavors of ripe strawberries and raspberries, this crisp, medium-bodied rosé is an ideal complement to spring green salads, light cheeses, mac and cheese, mozzarella cheese salads, goat cheese, cheese and crackers with olives and salumi... or enjoy as an evening aperitif, cheese optional.
This 100% Pinot Noir rosé comes from limestone-clay soil of their Sancerre vineyards, which are located two hours south of Paris on the fringes of the Loire Valle. This is a wonderfully food-friendly wine that can stand up to Santa Maria-style tri-tip, grilled sausages or spicy Vietnamese banh mi.
Vinous: "Pale pink. Bright and lively on the nose and palate, displaying fresh blood orange and red currant qualities and a suggestion of white pepper. Dry and nervy in character, offering firm closing bite and a subtle touch of candied flowers. (JR)" (6/2016) Wine Enthusiast: "Pale salmon-grey in color, this is perfumed, soft and generously ripe. It is well balanced between the light acidity and the rounded strawberry flavors, and the aftertaste brings in a crisper element. (RV)" (7/2016) Wine Spectator: "Very fresh, with a racy edge to the blood orange, white cherry and savory notes. (JM)" (8/2016)
Inventory: San Francisco
Vinous: "Light, bright orange. Zesty, sharply focused citrus fruit and strawberry scents are complemented by suggestions of succulent herbs and candied rose. Juicy and gently sweet, offering pliant red fruit flavors and a touch of bitter blood orange. Clings with good, spicy tenacity, leaving a subtle rose pastille note behind. (JR)" (6/2016) K&L Notes: Light and pale in color with fresh, crunchy strawberries on the nose and chalky minerals in the background. Fresh and light on the palate with a good focus of fruit throughout. This is a very well made rosé that deserves some ... Read More »
90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The straight up fabulous 2015 Tavel Les Lauzeraies is a layered, medium-bodied, beautifully textured Tavel that offers lots of flowers, lavender, spice and both cherry and raspberry fruit. Showing a touch of saltiness on the finish, drink this beauty with food over the coming year or so. (JD)" (5/2016) Wine Spectator: "A ripe rosé, with cherry and anise notes that stay focused and fresh, showing a flash of warm stone accents through the finish. Offers a juicy feel overall. Drink now. (JM)" (8/2016) K&L Notes: Rejoice Tavel! In a time when very high quality rosés line our shelves, when ... Read More »
This is a fresh, snappy berry-driven rosé with delicate floral notes. It's bright and crisp, delicious with or without food. Domaine les Pins has been family run for five generations. They are a small artisanal producer that oversees every stage of the production from start to finish. They have roughly 30 hectares of Cabernet Franc spread out through the Bourgueil and St-Nicolas de Bourgueil regions. They practice sustainable farming, and each and every vine gets singular attention throughout the year. Vines of an average age of 25 years are planted in s... Read More »
This delightful salmon-pink wine is produced using the traditional saignée process. After macerating on the skins for approximately 10 hours, the juice is then pumped off and fermented in temperature-controlled, stainless steel tanks. Aromatics of strawberries and crushed red fruit leap from the glass. In the mouth, it is fresh with excellent acidity, some mineral components and good length. Very food friendly, it is a great companion to just about anything you want to throw at it.
Pineau d'Aunis is a dark-skinned wine grape variety whose story began in the Loire Valley in the Middle Ages. Despite once being popular with royalty on both sides of the English Channel, the variety is now increasingly rare, and is limited to a role in the rosés and light reds of the central Loire. It is valued for the gently peppery spiciness it brings to the area's rosé wines, a role mirrored by the Carignan and Tibouren used to make the famous rosé wines of Provence. When the elements grant the Loire a vintage with warm weather more akin to that foun... Read More »
Light in color, as is typical for Sancerre Rosé, this has lively aromas of small red fruits with soft underlying minerals and just a hint of rich citrus. Light and playful on the palate with some Mirabelle, cherry and watermelon. Although a light and fresh style of rosé, this has nice weight and texture to it on the finish and it's very easy and fun to drink while grilling and chilling with friends. 100% Pinot Noir. (Eric Story, K&L Loire Valley Wine Buyer)
Agnes and Henri Gaussen cultivate the vineyard of Château de la Noblesse, which has been in their family for generations. The wine is a blend of 50% Mourvedre, 25% Grenache and 25% Cinsault. The Noblesse Rosé was recently featured in the Forbes Top Twenty Rosés for the 2016 summer season: "This is about as good as it gets in Provence rosé...well almost as good as it gets, and certainly as good as it gets for the money. With its intense purity, its ripe, tangy fruit - thinking melon with a tinge of grapefruit here - and mineral-layered complexity it shows... Read More »
Too soon? Not for rosé from the Southern Hemisphere, and not for this perennial staff and customer favorite at K&L. This is one of our best-selling and most-raved-about rosés every year. Hand-picked from biodynamically farmed, old Mourvèdre vines in a cool coastal sub-region of Stellenbosch, it's a fresh, elegant wine that does a fantastic impression of Bandol (which is also predominantly made from Mourvèdre), but at a fraction of the cost! Waterkloof is a stunning property working with very natural, non-interventionist methods. The wines are pure, expre... Read More »
Morgan Twain-Peterson may be the most talented young winemaker in United States. How could he not be, growing up in vineyards beside his well-known father, winemaker Joel Peterson (Ravenswood). Morgan has done exceptionally well in the eyes of the press, and us here at K&L, with his label Bedrock. His wines are thoughtfully crafted small production bottlings from old vines located in “heritage” vineyards throughout California. Hard to come by, these Bedrock wines already have a loyal and rabid following that just keeps growing year after year. We are luc... Read More »
94 points Bob Campbell: "Soft, subtle and silken Rosé, with flavours of crushed strawberry, watermelon, summer berries and a hint of rose petal. A gentle, charming wine that demonstrates considerable power through its lingering finish." (12/2015) K&L Notes: About the producer from Raymond Chan: "The GeorgeTown Vineyard label shot to fame when the 2007 Pinot Noir was awarded the Champion Exhibition Red Wine Trophy at the 2009 Air New Zealand Wine Awards. However the quantity of wine from the vineyard is tiny, as indicated by the ‘Exhibition' status of the trophy, reserved for limited producti... Read More »
Jancis Robinson: "75% Grenache, 25% Syrah hand picked on Nicolas Haeni's relatively new, high estate. 30% free run. Pale lipstick pink. Good substance in the mouth, lightly chewy and just the merest suggestion of sweetness in its strawberry fruit thanks to the Grenache portion. Attractive dry finish. Well made and confident. Definitely southern Rhône rather than Provençal. Juicy." (7/2016) Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "Giving up some resinous herbs and tart cherry nuances, the 2015 Rose from Domaine Malmont is medium-bodied, fresh and lively, with some tart acidity on the finish. (JD)" (5/2016) K&L Notes: Domaine d... Read More »
La Noue is a 2.5 hectare vineyard plot from which Domaine Claude Riffault makes their red and rosé wine. The plot is divided into seven adjacent vineyards featuring Terres Blanches and Kimmeridgian marl soils with 100% Pinot Noir vines ranging from 8 to 56 years old. The rosé is allowed some light skin contact to gain color, complexity, and aromatic interest during its vinification.
(last of vintage) Noblaie's rosé is produced from younger Cabernet Franc vines, which are planted in the deeper soils at the base of the hillside vineyard. It has a clear and smooth pink color, deep, rich aromas of watermelon and cranberry and loads of lovely fresh red fruits on the palate.
The Leperchois family, who has been making wine in the Rhône Valley since 1920, turned to organic farming in 1997 when they realized that pollution was impoverishing their soil. Their Lunar Apogé line takes this ethos one step further--it is Demeter-certified organic and biodynamic. They use only natural yeasts and hand harvesting, working intricately with the rhythms of the seasons. 50% Grenache, 20% Cinsault, 15% Clairette.
Costières de Nîmes is at the southernmost part of the Rhône Valley, on the opposite bank of Châteauneuf-du-Pape. One of our best new finds is Château de l'Ermitage which produces three terrific values with imminent drinkability. The estate's history traces back to the 12th century when the winery produced wine for the pilgrims of St-Jacques de Compostelle who were traveling the Santiago de Compostela. The property is now owned by the Castillon family, and today Michel and his son Jerome manage the vineyards and winemaking. The "Victor" is named for the f... Read More »
Inventory: Redwood City
Jancis Robinson: "Pale strawberry colour. Very simple and fresh with fermentation aromas. Dry and bracing. (JR)" (3/2015)
Vinous: "Light bright orange. Fresh and racy on the nose, displaying aromas of fresh red berries and orange zest. Fleshy, dry and focused, offering bitter cherry and red currant flavors that show a touch of warmth as the wine opens up. Closes soft and broad, displaying good cling and a lingering suggestion of candied orange zest. (JR)" (6/2016) K&L Notes: Château Viranel is a small family-run domaine located in the picturesque Languedoc appellation of Saint-Chinian. The domaine's rosé is perfect for an apéritif but is also ideal served throughout a meal because of its richnes... Read More »
Every year, Heitz produces a limited amount of their Grignolino rosé. With its vibrant pink hue, vibrant wild strawberry and orange zest flavors, this sparkling wine isn't just refreshing, it's a pleasure.
James Halliday: "Pale colour with a hint of spritz. Attractive mix of raspberried fruit and twiggier, spicier, more earthen influences. Finishes fresh." (7/2015) K&L Notes: From old vines. Winemaker's notes: "Bright salmon pink in colour. A highly aromatic wine that opens with strawberries and cream, cherry blossom, talcum powder and a hint of pear skin. This wine has flavours of raspberry iced tea, red apple and pomegranate. A supple and briny texture with a blood orange finish leaves you looking for the next sip. The Grenache that produced this Rosé is either sourced from bush vine... Read More »
Raidis Estate is a boutique property in Coonawarra, South Australia. The small acreage of estate vines, planted 26 years ago, is looked after by two generations of the Raidis family. The wines are very small production and faithfully reflect this cool climate, heavily limestone influenced region. The Pinot Gris rosé is very interesting. Extended skin contact draws just the faintest blush pink from the luminous skins of this intriguing varietal. While the color of this rosé is very subtle its aromas and flavors are not. The wine soars with bright floral n... Read More »
The fruit is all Pinot Noir from Laurel Vineyard. One of the highest elevation vineyards in Oregon (1250 feet in elevation), the grapes are all Alsatian Coury clones (brought back to Oregon from Alsace in 1965 by Charles Coury). The soil type at Laurel Vineyard is wind-blown loam and the vines were planted in the 1980s. The fruit came in rather late (good physiological ripeness) but they decided to make Rosé instead of Pinot Noir with it. They only kept this fruit on their skins for 2 hours and then sent it off to the press (more vin gris in style). All ... Read More »
94 points James Halliday: "**2015 Winery of The Year Award - James Haliday's Wine Companion** Destemmed, crushed and with 24 hours skin contact; 25% pressed direct to used French barriques for a 31-day wild ferment, 75% settled, thence to stainless steel for cultured fermentation. Vivid crimson; vibrant acidity gives this complex wine the characteristics of a white wine with a formidable finish." K&L Notes: A beautiful dry, fresh, rose of Grenache. The fruit is picked early specifically for Rose production to retain lots of mouth watering acidity and very moderate alcohol (11.5%). This rose se... Read More »
Inventory: San Francisco
Based in the Gualtallary district of the Uco Valley, an area prized for its complex soils containing calcareous, granite, and stone alluvial deposits, Zorzal, and the brothers Michelini who make its wines, are definitely forging a new path for Argentinean wine. Their m.o. is generally to harvest much earlier than everyone else; they prize acidity in their wines and believe that even wines from the warm, sun-drenched Uco Valley should be crisp, vibrant, and refreshing. All the Zorzal wines feature fruit from the aforementioned Gualtallary district, and ma... Read More »
One of our most popular rosés, this fresh and balanced wine comes from one of our favorite co-ops in the south of France. It's a blend of Syrah and Grenache grown in volcanic soils in the heart of the Languedoc. With aromas and flavors of ripe strawberries and raspberries, this crisp, medium-bodied rosé is an ideal complement to spring green salads, light cheeses, mac and cheese, mozzarella cheese salads, goat cheese, cheese and crackers with olives and salumi...or enjoy as an evening aperitif, cheese optional.
91 points Vinous: "Hazy orange color. Displays highly fragrant, ripe red berries, tangerine, peach and honey, with a suave floral overtone. Pliant and subtly sweet, offering palate-caressing raspberry, orange liqueur and rose pastille flavors that are braced by a suggestion of quinine. Juicy and seamless, with strong closing thrust and impressively persistent floral and bitter orange pith. (JR)" (6/2016)
Bright and driven style of Gamay Rose. Perfectly dry finish with spiced red fruits and hints of stone fruit. This comes from the little known AOC of Côte Roannaise, which was established in 1994 and sits about 50 kilometers west of Lyon in the Loire Valley. The granitic soils of this southern appellation are well-suited to Gamay, and especially to the family-owned Domaine Robert Sérol, now being run by the fifth generation. The domaine's namesake, Robert, was the first in the family to bottle the wines, and he can be still found wandering the property to... Read More »
Many people ask me to describe Corsican wine in general. I like to say it’s “like Italian flavors surrounded by French sensibilities.” Our newest Corsica producer is Domaine Santamaria. Run by Jean-Louis and Thomas Santamaria, this certified organic producer is based in the Patrimonio region, located on the northern end of the island. They specialize in Niellucciu, Vermentinu and Muscat. (Keith Mabry, K&L French Regional wine buyer)
91 points Wine Enthusiast: "Restraint, elegance, freshness. This delicate rosé has the softest scent of tart summer berries and overtones of rose petals. There is a spicier aspect and fruitier notes of freshly cut apple on the midpalate. But this delivers full flavor with immense delicacy. Bravo." (7/2016)
Inventory: Redwood City
The winegrowing estate of Château les Valentines is more than a century old. The estate originally brought their grapes to the local cooperative, but when Gilles and Pascale Pons took over in 1997, they decided to make their own wine. They built a modern winery and called the domaine "Les Valentines" after their children, Valentin and Clémentine. Château les Valentines now covers approximately 100 acres. Always released later in the season, and because of its La Londe special designation, this is their equivalent of a grand cru rosé wine for the region. ... Read More »
It is a classic "partridge's eye" pale pink color, with delicate fruit aromas and flavors accented by notes of savory herb and earthy, peppery spice. Light, refreshing, and complex, this is the perfect partner to savory snacks, salads, fish dishes, cured meats, or picnic fare. Serve chilled. Jean-François is an up-and-coming winemaker in Touraine who we've become a big fan of over the past few years. The rosé is made by direct pressing followed by a traditional vinification of Pineau d'Aunis, the ancient Loire grape variety that grows on chalky clay soi... Read More »
Produced from 60 year old mencía vines growing in Bierzo's famous slate vineyards, this fresh, tank aged wine shows original, bitter cherry, slightly medicinal aromas. Dark fruits on the palate pop with freshness, a lovely bitter snap and solid overall feel texturally. This is a great wine with plenty of surprising complexity for the price.
Wine Enthusiast: "Fresh and forward flavors mix rhubarb, ripe strawberries and sweet Bing cherries. This vibrant wine finishes with a refreshing snap of acidity, making it a pleasure to drink." (6/2016)
About the producer: "The heart of the estate’s guiding philosophy is the search for the highest quality obtainable in full respect of the tradition of the place. The human passion of the wine grower translates into long-term projects and investments, into patience waiting for the land to be ready, for the vines to grow, for the grapes to ripen – just once a year – and the wine to mature. In 1999, Paolo De Marchi ad his son Luca dusted off the long Piedmontese family tradition with the goal of bring the legendary wines of North Piedmont back into the li... Read More »
Inventory: Redwood City
This wine comes to us from one of the Bilbro brothers of Marietta Cellars, which makes the fan-favorite, unbelievable value blend called "Marietta Old Vine Red." Idlewild Wines is Sam Bilbro's venture, and while it may appear to be the most alternative out of the three, don’t call it hipster. Idlewild focuses primarily on Italian varietals from high-elevation vineyards in Mendocino County. And while Sam has a grassroots, natural approach to his wines, there are no gimmicks or trends here. His straightforward, Old World approach results in wines with both... Read More »
Based in the Rioja Alavesa town of Samaniego, Ostatu has worked diligently to fine tune the style of their rosado and truly has produced one of our favorite, everyday value pink wines from Spain over the past few vintages. A blend of Tempranillo with some Garnacha and Viura, this rosé's gently hued pink color suggests a light touch and relatively quick skin maceration, as does its fresh, lively, red fruited profile. This is a big gulp type of wine, delicious on its own or with charcuterie, cheeses, veges and aioli, grilled fish, cured anchovies, roasted ... Read More »
Fresh strawberry, raspberry and citrius fruit flavors combine to make this rosé highly gulpable! It's fun and fruit forward, but with admirable cut and precision. One of our favorite cooperatives on the Iberian peninsula produces this lovely wine. Charcuterie, highest quality cured anchovies (Atlantic anchovies, of course!), cheeses and other snacks would all pair terrifically with this rosé. (Joe Manekin, K&L Portuguese & Spanish wine buyer)
Teutonic is making some of the finest German-inspired wines in the U.S. They work with cooler, higher-elevation sites to allow their grapes to hang on the vine longer and develop more physiological ripeness. In fact, Laurel Vineyard is located at one of the highest elevations in Oregon at 1250 feet. This is an elegant rosé that's low in alcohol (which means you can drink it by the gallon!), showing notes of dark plum, pink apples, and cassis.
Inventory: Redwood City
This wine from the Pisoni family of brands is one that goes beyond great taste--it also benefits a great cause. From the producer: "Lucy Rose was born in 2003 when winemaker Jeff Pisoni made only two barrels. Shortly after, the Pisonis decided they should make more and donate a percentage of the sales to the fight against breast cancer. The association of pink Rose wine with the pink ribbon representing breast-cancer awareness seemed like a perfect match."
Clos Cibonne's special rosé bottling is 100% Tibouren sourced from 60+ year old vines instead of 30 years for the regular bottling. It is aged on the lees for 1 year before bottling, so it hits the market the year after the rosé wines from other estates. From the importer: "Intense color. On the nose it is spicy with hints of quince and roasted nuts. The palate is bold and fresh with a long finish."
93 points James Halliday: "A blend of Pinot Noir, Syrah and Pinot Meunier crushed and left on skins for 24 hours. Pale, but vivid, pink; it has a savoury, highly textured, dry palate with a curling wave of faintly citrussy acidity lifting the lingering finish. Food an optional extra." (10/2015) K&L Notes: Having S.C. Pannell as a K&L exclusive import is like having the national monopoly on Opus One. Steve Pannell is one of the most highly regarded and awarded winemakers in Australian history. Pannell has the rare distinction of winning not one but two Jimmy Watson Trophies (the most prestigio... Read More »
Acustic is based in the Montsant village of Marça, which incidentally is where the RENFE train station is located along with a solid café should you need a quick lunch, snack or beer on your way back from a winery visit! This bright, intense, structured, chewy and original rosé is produced from Cariñena and Garnacha. Full-bodied and serious, it still manages to refresh the palate as a good rosé should! Delicious and well worth a try. (Joe Manekin, K&L Spanish Wine Buyer)
92 points Vinous: "Light, bright orange. Potent, mineral-accented citrus fruit and red berry aromas, along with a suave honeysuckle flourish. Silky and expansive, offering juicy strawberry, tangerine and lavender pastille flavors and a deeper suggestion of white peach. Ripe yet lithe, with the mineral and floral elements carrying through. Impressively long, focused and seamless finish. (JR)" (6/2016) 91 points Wine Enthusiast: "The pale rosé color doesn't detract from this concentrated, ripe wine that offers yellow fruits, orange zest and spicy flavors. Pure acidity gives intense freshness and an impre ...Read More »