I don’t drink as much rosé as I should. Even though I know that most of it isn’t the sweet and insipid stuff of stereotype, whenever I’m in wine-buying mode there always seems to be something else on the shelf that pulls me in more. In fact, I’m pretty sure that this, Wine Review #82, is Pop & Pour’s first rosé write-up. Yikes. I promise to do better in the future.
While this is PnP’s inaugural rosé feature, it’s the second wine from the Dirty Laundry winery in Summerland, BC that I’ve reviewed, and (thankfully) the first I haven’t been horribly disappointed in. For those of you who missed the tale of my September visit to Dirty Laundry and my lack of admiration for their Madam’s Vines Gewürztraminer, click here for the full scoop. This rosé was the only other wine I grabbed from DL, and the wine in their cellar-door tasting lineup that I liked the most, so I popped and poured tonight hoping for bigger and better things.
The (rockingly designed) bottle of DL’s “Hush” Rosé proclaims that it’s “all pinot noir, but maybe not.” Thanks. Turns out it’s actually only 30% Pinot Noir, as well as 50% Cabernet Franc, 9% Pinot Blanc, 5% “Cab/Merlot” and 6% “hush hush”…hopefully that refers to another secret grape and not turpentine or arsenic or something. (UPDATE: a big thanks to Sasha in the comments section of this post, who clarified that the 6% “hush hush” is actually Gewürztraminer. Not arsenic. Phew.) As you can see in the above picture, the Hush is a shockingly vivid colour in the glass that’s halfway between salmon pink and fire engine red, a hue that the clear bottle (hint: clear normally means intended for early consumption!) displays to full advantage. It’s not overly aromatic, with understated rose (NOT rosé) notes quietly mixing with sour berries and a rain-like smell, but it’s bright, crisp and lively on the palate. The taste can best be described as RED, all crabapple, raspberry, strawberry, cranberry and red currant underscored by a streak of minerality. Like most rosés, the Hush is fairly light-bodied, with vibrant acidity, a bare hint of sweetness and a clean but slightly chemical finish. I can’t quite put my finger on why, but it seems a little manipulated to me, a little artificial. Cherry LifeSavers almost taste like real cherries, but not quite; this is like a rosé LifeSaver. For a $20 bottle of rosé, I’m not overly fussed about this — I like LifeSavers — but it’s always in the back of my mind as I drink this bottle.
Still, while not overly complex, the Hush is a great patio sipper (Editor’s Note: then why did you wait till December to drink it?) and an easy food match that would work with a wide range of dishes. I continue to think it’s my favourite Dirty Laundry wine, and it does nothing to dissuade me from my new quest to add more rosé to my drinking repertoire, so if you can grab it at winery prices, go for it.
$15 to $20 CDN