Should real men drink pink wine?

Wines
Wines
Image: OLGA YASTREMSKA

Google “real men” and “rosé” and you’ll find hordes of articles and blogs arguing that macho types should, and do, drink pink wine.

Call it “Brosé” if you must, but for those who insist on sticking to the stereotype, here’s some news for you — you don’t know what you’re missing out on!

Rosé wine has been growing in popularity the world over for at least the last five years, stemming from the thirst for the elegant, dry Provencal-style rosés of France, and SA’s winemakers have been getting on the bandwagon too, making rosé in more “serious” styles with texture, subtlety and complexity.

Rosé goes well with almost any kind of food — from sushi, seafood platters and salads through to creamy pasta and charcuterie, and your bigger, bolder rosé’s work well with braaied lamb chops or a juicy steak too.

A pair of double gold winners in this year’s Rosé Rocks competition, announced in October, are as good a place as any to start in exploring some of SA’s premium rosés.

Its name translating to “my beautiful friend”, Elgin Vintners Belle Amie 2020 (R130) really is beautiful, from its strikingly elegant bottle (which also comes in magnum, great for a summer lunch table) to its pale smoked salmon colour through to the dry, but not super-dry, palate which weaves ripe strawberries and tart cranberries around fresh acidity and a mouthwatering finish.

Belle Amie is all about finesse and complexity, much more than a straightforward big berry basket of a wine.

De Krans in Calitzdorp have played around with different red cultivars for their rosé and have settled on pinotage, and they’re right, it works really well in the 2020 De Krans Pinotage Rosé (R62), which took home a winning spot in the Pinotage Association’s 2020 Pinotage Rosé competition as well as a Rosé Rocks double gold.

Somehow SA’s home-grown grape with its savoury, leathery-spice character makes sense in a pink wine from the arid Karoo, balancing delicious over-ripe strawberries with a touch of spice and gentle hints of pinotage leathery tang.

Perfect on a Karoo summer’s day.

A Rosé Rocks gold medallist, De Grendel Rosé 2020 (R80) is exhilaratingly dry, an exciting wine with racy acidity and juicy fruit — red fruit purity meets citrus zing, with some floral and spice notes, layers unfolding as you dive in.

Bone dry, elegant, full-flavoured, this one wants prawns on the braai, Portuguese sardines or a watermelon and feta salad that plays with its fruit and savoury notes.

At the risk of being gender-insensitive, this rosé is why real men — in fact, real wine lovers of all stripes — SHOULD drink pink.

Forget about your pink issues, these are just excellent wines.

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