Malcolm Jolley attends the annual gentlemen’s celebration of Ontario Rosé.
Restaurateur John Maxwell, of the esteemed Allen’s on the Danforth, once again played host, with oenological impressario Billy Munnelly, to the annual luncheon known as Men In Pink. The two men thought up the event in the not that long ago era when rosé wine wasn’t being taken especially seriously, especially by men. Why not, they asked themselves, congregate a collection of guys who make or sell or write about, or just plain love wine and restrict them pink wine over an afternoon food and conversation. The price? Attendees must wear at least one item of clothing in a pink hue.
So, here’s how the afternoon unfolded with some of the characters who declared themselves Men In Pink this year…
Every year a few wine writers manage to sneak in, like Tony Aspler CM.
Real Men In Pink veterans, like Southbrook’s Bill Redelmeier (right), know to bring a hat in case of a sunny seat.
Restaurateurs are part of the Men In Pink crowd, like Nord Bistro’s Joe Bersani.
After lunch, there are speeches on the virtues of rosé. Rosehall Run’s Dan Sullivan wins over the crowd with a salient point on pink wine.
Kevin Gallagher of Mildred’s Temple Kitchen joins in the applause for Chef Ponniah who has been beckoned from his kitchen by the happy diners.
Attendees then withdraw from the table to taste rare and old wines brought by the vignerons. Southbrook’s Paul DeCampo talks about the winery’s orange wine, as Cave Spring’s Len Pennachetti and John Maxwell look on.
In all seriousness, Men In Pink may look like a silly event but its purpose is an important one. Ontario makes great rosé, in every style. As he does every year, John Maxwell (whose support of local wine is as legendary as it has been steadfast) exhorted the gentlemen around to be proud of our pink prowess and spread the word about these cool climate wines. So, gentlmen go pour yourself (and ladies present) a glass and toast to Ontario rosé.