2020 Wölffer Estate Rosé Table Wine “Summer In A Bottle”, Long Island, New York (Alcohol 12.8%, Residual Sugar “very little!”) LCBO $38.70 (750ml bottle)

Well, this little number took me by surprise, and turned out to be the most enjoyable rosé I have enjoyed in quite some time. Maybe it’s the influence of the summer-like weather (with the occasional snow flurry), but this really blew my socks off last night as it was not at all what I was expecting.

Now, quite how a rosé made up of 48.5% Merlot, 17% Chardonnay, 13% Cabernet Sauvignon, 13% Cabernet Franc, 3% Gewürztraminer, 3% Sauvignon Blanc, 2% Pinot Meunier, and 0.5% Pinot Blanc works as well as this, I just don’t know, but oh boy, it does.

Before reading the tasting notes I was attempting to analyze my glass, trying to deduce the cépage, and I, for the life of me, couldn’t quite work it out. I was thinking “Cinsaut, Grenache, Mourvèdre? In New York? Surely not?”. There’s certainly a knowing tip of the hat towards the classier end of the Provençal rosé style, and indeed, if presented to me blind, I may have gone down that alley.

For such a magnificent mélange, this is an incredibly well-crafted wine, and hits all of the right spots with regards to gastronomic rosé, and then some. Now, while I do love my Domaine Tempier Bandol rosé, I have to admit that I rank this Long Island example right up there with some of the greats, and, to be frank, that is not something I was expecting to be writing in this column. Not that I wasn’t expecting good rosé from these parts, quite the opposite… just not quite THIS damn good.

This pale pink, copper-tinged charmer is a subtle but sensual airburst of warm summer berries, moist and honeyed canned pears, and orchard blossom florals, the palate a brisk, vibrant, tart, snappy attack of cranberries tempered by a gorgeous lees-influenced textural component, finishing with a briney, quinine-like finish that tempts you back for more. Bloody great stuff. Seriously.

And I didn’t even mention the absolutely stunning bottle design (see above).

Summer in a bottle, indeed!

(Five out of a possible five apples… and that’s a rarity)

Wölffer Estate’s wines are represented in Ontario by The Vine Agency.

The Vine Agency are a Good Food Fighter.

Please support the businesses and organizations that support Good Food Revolution.


Edinburgh-born/Toronto-based Sommelier, consultant, writer, judge, and educator Jamie Drummond is the Director of Programs/Editor of Good Food RevolutionAnd even my wife could appreciate the beauty of the bottle.