I Love Reviewing French Wine - A Cotes De Provence Rose

     We are entering the last roundup for rose wine this season. Today's offering comes from a family who has lived in famous Provence since the Thirteenth Century. These upstarts have only been in the wine business since the turn of the century (1900). Some sixty years later they purchased the local chateau whose name is on the label. It was formerly the summer residence of the Archbishops of Toulon. This wine is made from Syrah, Grenache, Cinsault grapes and five others including Rolle. You may want to visit the village of Pierrefeu, an example of a Provence village that hasn't been touristified. The companion wine is a bargain basement white Zinfandel (another rose).

OUR WINE REVIEW POLICY All wines that we taste and review are purchased at the full retail price.

Wine Reviewed
Chateau de Tour de l'Eveque Rose, Appellation Cotes de Provence, 2010 13.5 % alcohol about $17.

Let's start by quoting the marketing materials. "Description: The cuisine of Provence seems to have a real affinity for the region's best roses. Very crisp and dry, this wine delivers flavors of strawberry, cranberry and spice. An ideal match for a homemade aioli (the great garlicky dipping sauce) with grilled shrimp, or pan-seared scallops grilled in butter and garlic." And now for my review.

At the first sips this wine started out somewhat flat but subsequently good acidity and light strawberries came through. Japanese rice crackers with a fiery Wasabi pea expanded the wine. The initial meal was an omelet perked up with majoram, garlic powder, dried basil leaves, black pepper, and a Middle Eastern spice mix. Now the liquid was slightly metallic, and tasted of raspberries. When paired with a white bean humus the rose was long with good acidity but little fruit. The accent of roasted garlic tapenade had no effect on its acidity but brought out the taste of light raspberries.

The following meal featured a boxed baked Ziti Siciliano. Now the wine was metallic and provided a tinge of sweetness. It offered great length and balance. When paired with a garden grown fresh tomato the wine was syrupy, and I tasted wood. Dessert was Haagen-Dazs coffee ice cream. In response this drink thinned. Don't waste it on ice cream.

My final meal centered on a commercial barbecued chicken leg. I had the taste of metal in my mouth along with slightly harsh, lemony acidity. It was nice and round and the wine's acidity handled the chicken's grease well. Talking about grease, one side was potatoes that were roasted in chicken fat. In response the drink picked up sweetness but the dish's saltiness came through. I don't know about you but I hate salt in my wine. When paired with zesty guacamole this wine was long and fruity. Dessert, bittersweet Swiss chocolate, muted this libation full time.

Final verdict. While it came fairly close I will not buy this wine again. I'm not that wild about roses, even those coming from Provence, and there's a lot of competition at this price.

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Levi Reiss authored or co-authored ten computer and Internet books, but prefers drinking fine wine with the right foods and people. He teaches computers at an Ontario French-language community college. His global wine website www.theworldwidewine.com features a weekly review of $10 wines. Visit his Italian travel website www.travelitalytravel.com

Posted on 2013-10-07, By: *

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Note: The content of this article solely conveys the opinion of its author.

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