Something strange happens to me in early summer, when the temperature creeps above 80 degrees. A switch flips and all I want to drink are white wines and rosés. I will still drink my light-bodied reds, but the season just calls for something a little lighter and chilled. I know I should be drinking whites and rosés year round, but my palate just craves something bolder and darker in the fall and winter; I want to feel like I’m in the coziest blanket in front of a fireplace (which I do not have) with my two cats. But when it’s summer I forget about Cabernet and Zinfandel and turn toward Sauvignon Blanc and all the rosé like your most basic bitch.
Today it is 81 lovely degrees, and I decided to try the Père Anselme Rosé. This is a Provencal rosé comprised primarily of Grenache and Cinsault with a bit of Syrah. It is the lightest salmon hue, which is perfect because I’m pairing it with salmon and this ridiculously difficult salad I made (who even knows what fennel is or how to cut it?) It smells like the freshest strawberries, just off the vine and into your mouth. Ripe but not too much so. It has a great deal of body and holds its own quite well, which is always my concern with rosé since I typically go for a full-bodied red.
This rosé reminds me of the perfect vacation I took with my family after I graduated high school a decade ago. We started in San Francisco then drove up the coast a bit to Gualala and Mendocino, stopping in the Muir Woods. I felt like I came into my own on that trip. I was recovering from heartbreak and listened to a lot of early Radiohead (The Bends always reminds me of Northern California) and wrote a ton in this cheap floral journal I bought in a shop in Chinatown. It was the best. I’ll never forget my dad saying “this is probably the last time we’ll take a vacation together” and I guess he was right. At the time, I thought that meant he was cutting me off, but then I realized he just meant that I was going to grow beyond who I was at 18 and have new friends and interests.
But honestly it was our last vacation all together since my brother passed away several years after. I would love to go back to the northern coast of California as a 28 year old with my family and introduce them to this wine (even though my parents don't really drink). I wish I could sit on the porch of our B & B, eating fresh fruit and drinking this rosé. This wine is fruity but briny with notes of grapefruit and Rainier cherries, which I only know because I just bought them for the first time in forever. So much has changed for me in 10 years but there is still a part of myself that has always been that 18 year old, unsure of herself, heartbroken and listening to Radiohead, scribbling in cheap journals just trying to make sense of it all. In a way, that's what I'm doing now. Man, this rosé will make you nostalgic as fuck, so beware. It's ideal to pair it with Northern California and Black Star (on an iPod from 2007, if possible).