MY FAVORITE SPRING AND SUMMER ROSÉ, FROM THE HEART OF FRANCE’S LUBERON REGION

BY NICOLAS HARARY

Many years ago, my wife Melissa and I traveled to the south of France and fell in love. That’s the important part of the trip, but a side effect was the discovery of dry, Provençal rosé—specifically in the form of pairing it with bouillabaisse, the Provençal fish soup. Simply stunning.

Of course, when we got back to the States and got up on our soapboxes to proclaim the wonder of this wine, all we got were crickets; the market was still stuck on White Zinfandel when it came to blush wine. A lot has changed since the ’90s, however; now, dry rosé is a category that seemingly quadruples in popularity every year. This makes sense, as when people actually drink it with food, they find that there are few pours more versatile.

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For Restaurant Nicholas, a lot of that rising popularity has to do with Domaine de la Citadelle Luberon Rosé, our house pink, at least for the few months of the year that we have it. It’s an organic rosé, from just north of France’s Mount Ventoux, with pretty aromas of fresh berries and citrus rind, and it’s just packed with fruit. It finishes dry and long—the perfect accompaniment with a host of seasonal cuisine and a most appropriate wine for spring and summer al fresco dining.

Domaine de la Citadelle’s organically farmed estate is made of 65 small parcels set at 900 feet in elevation, just north of the Luberon mountains. Although Citadelle is only a half an hour away from Chateauneuf du Pape, being north of the mountains allows for slightly cooler days and nights—the perfect place to make concentrated yet vibrant wine. The estate’s rosé, Le Châtaignier, is terrific, fresh and fruity, and perfectly bone-dry. It’s also fragrantly intense, so be sure to drink it in a big glass.

You know of the bouillabaisse pairing, but the beauty of this rosé is that it goes with just about everything…including gumbo, spring asparagus, juicy burgers, and roasted poultry. Cheers!

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Nicholas Wines
Domaine de la Citadelle Le Châtaignier
Regular price: $20
Nicholas Wines price: $17 ($180 case price, or $15.30 per bottle)
nicholaswines.com