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by Bernadette Reddy

En Primeur Clare Valley Australian Grenache Rosé

I bottled this wine about a month ago and began sampling it almost immediately. It was too delicious! It definitely lives up to its reputation as a wine best drank young. I was so impressed that I haven’t stopped raving about it and I keep offering it to everyone who visits my home.

Grenache is the most planted red wine grape in the world and is used mostly in blends. It is the base for Chateauneuf du Pape and featured heavily in Rioja. If you enjoy these wines you're already a fan. Its low tannin means it doesn't age well and its high sugar content can produce a wine very high in alcohol. It is a late riper and likes the hot dry conditions found in Spain, South of France and California and is the basis for much of Australia’s fortified wines. Unfortunately for the Grenache lover this grape has been declining in popularity over the past few years because of its strong wood canopy. This makes it difficult to use mechanical harvesters so it requires hand picking

This Grenache Rosé comes from RJ Spagnols' premium wine kit line—En Primeur. This is an 18 litre wine kit so it can be a bit heavy for some people to handle but it's well worth the effort. The kit weighs almost 50 pounds so it might be a good idea to have some help available when you're ready to make it. It comes with a süss-reserve pack which I think adds just the right amount of sweetness and balance to the wine.

When you splash this rosé into your glass it does not blush it blazes! This sumptuous wine is not a shy pink. It is reminiscence of an amazing sunset or even a glassful of pink rubies. It's full of strawberry and raspberry flavours and aromas. It brings to mind the ice cold strawberry Kool-Aid from my childhood.

Once chilled it's a great stand alone wine or can be served with BBQ chicken, pasta salad, fish or—as I did last Saturday—grilled steak. This is a very versatile wine. I've even enjoyed it with toast as a late night snack.

RJ Spagnols En Primeur Grenache Rosé is the perfect summer wine but I think it would be a wonderful accompaniment to a Thanksgiving or Christmas Turkey dinner.