Bonne Fete du Virginia Rosé!

by dccheese on May 29, 2013

in cheese plates,rosé,Vinos,wine events

I apologize to our out-of-state readers for two Virginia wine features in a row, but it’s come to my attention that today has been declared Virginia Rosé Day. Never one to pass up a pink drink, and having spent several weekends this month wine tasting in the Virginia countryside, I’ve actually tasted a few local rosés worth telling you about. After this, though, we’ll keep the Virginia wine posts to a monthly feature as I know it can be hard to locate our smaller vintners’ offerings outside the region. If you can’t get your hands on Virginia rosé, try our cheese pairing suggestions with your favorite and let us know what you think.



Vintage Ridge Dragon Dance Rosé

On Mother’s Day we stumbled upon Vintage Ridge Vineyard & Winery in Delaplane, Va., en route to another popular winery nearby. Vintage Ridge has a beautiful tasting room that opens onto a large covered patio. They offer their tastings at your table, which is highly convenient for those of us who insist on taking the kids with us. (And rather than plopping them on the floor at the counter, the table gives them room to color and stay out of others’ way, too.) The cheese plate was a little too generic for my liking (BellaVitano from Wisconsin was the best of the lot), but there are a couple snack options and a bigger spread offered on their “premier pairings” weekends. (Check the website for details.)

They actually had two rosés, but the one I brought home was the Dragon Dance 2011, an off-dry Syrah rosé that is actually more orange than pink in color, the perfect hue to sip at sunset. It’s fruity — reminiscent of peaches — and just a little sweet (1.25% residual sugar), so it can stand up to the slight ammonia of the camembert rind.


Rosé wine and cheese pairing

The great thing about rosé is that it can play nicely with a wide range of cheeses, much like sparkling wines. Sparkling rosé is always great with a runny, mushroomy bloomy-rind, while a dry rosé can go nicely with aged goat or sheeps milk cheeses. Because rosés often come from France, I’ve paired mine with a new camembert-style cheese, Bloomery, from Spring Gap Mountain Creamery in West Virginia. For a decadent double-header, and hint of sheeps-milk, I also added Robiola due Latti (Guffanti Formaggi) from Italy’s Piedmont region — especially fitting as Vintage Ridge is located in an area known as Virginia’s Piedmont.

I was lacking an appropriate third cheese, but I’d go with a firm, aged goats milk, like Manchester from Consider Bardwell. Pastoral Chicago suggests pairing Tumalo Farm‘s Classico, from Oregon, with a fruity rosé — I like the sound of that, too.

Vintage Ridge Vineyard & Winery, Virginia

Other Virginia rosés worth noting: the Flying Fox I mentioned last week, and Cellar Blog writes about North Gate Vineyard’s chambourcin offering, which I’ve also enjoyed in the past. (North Gate samples and sells at the Falls Church Farmers Market on Saturday mornings, FYI.) And Trump Winery (yes, that Trump) apparently won a gold medal in the Virginia Governor’s Cup earlier this year for their 2008 sparkling rosé.

If you’d like to geek out over rosé, join us at the #VAWineChat tomorrow, 5/30, at 7pm Eastern on Twitter — hosted by the Virginia Wine Board.

Tell us, what cheese(s) have you enjoyed with a pink drink lately?

{ 1 comment }

Carrie @ Season It Already! May 30, 2013 at 11:23 am

Love a good rose in the summertime!

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