The Rosé Soireé is always one of my favorite wine events of the year. For those of you who have not attended, the long and short of it is that Linden Street in Geneva becomes a giant open air Finger Lakes Rosé festival. The event is sponsored by Microclimate wine bar (a favorite of mine, look for a post on this coming soon), and features dozens of Finger Lakes Wine producers with their best iteration of a French styled dry rosé.
Upon arriving to the festival, I was handed a beautiful wine glass, and a number of drink tickets which could be exchanged for samples at one of the many producer tents. Live music and laughter filled the air, as did the aromas of fresh food being sold by vendors. The ambiance of this Soirée cannot be beat. I was highly disappointed though, that I did not read the event website thoroughly. Apparently, you are allowed to bring cheese and crackers and other snacks to the event! There is always next year…
Now on to the good part. The WINES!
By far, the coolest and most interesting find of the night was the Barnstormer Winery’s 2016 Sangiovese Rosé. Now for those of you that know me, I am a sucker for a good Italian red. So to hear about a rosé being made from the Chianti Classico grape, I HAD to try it. It was even better than I expected! I tasted strong strawberry and citrus tones, and there was a watermelon characteristic to it. The smoothness and velvety texture of the Sangiovese grape was not lost on this fresh and crisp version. I had never actually heard of Barnstormer Winery, so this was a fun find. They have been around since 2013 and are located towards Watkins Glen. I had a great chat with Scott, the wine director. He said they make 50 cases of this typically and release it in March, and usually by June they are sold out. Sad news for all of you looking to try this, they sold out of this last night! But, check them out next year in March for their next release. (www.barnstormerwinery.com)
Another “out-of-the-box” find was Dr. Frank’s “Celebre” Sparkling Rosé made in the traditional style with Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier. There was a sweetness of lush cherries to this wine, but was perfectly balanced with fine bubbles. It was a crowd favorite in my group. (http://www.drfrankwines.com)
Last but not least, I would be remiss to review the event without listing some of the best “traditional” dry rosés….
Best on the nose: Rooster Hill Vineyards 2016 Dry Rosé (https://roosterhill.com/)
Best tasting: Red Tail Ridge 2016 Dry Rosé (http://www.redtailridgewinery.com/)
Consistently good: Billsboro 2016 Dry Rosé (http://www.billsborowinery.com/)
Honorable mention: Keuka Springs 2016 Dry Rosé (http://www.keukaspringwinery.com/)
and Damiani Dry Rosé (http://damianiwinecellars.com/)
For those of you who have not yet tried a dry rosé from the Finger Lakes… WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR? First we specialized in Rieslings, and now we are specializing in dry Rosé..and I LOVE IT. I think you will too. Most all that I have tried are bright and crisp, and perfect for the summer weather. Dry Rosés are a crowd pleaser. Have you tried a Finger Lakes dry rosé recently that you loved? Comment below!