Rosé wines are hot-they're hot with au courant trend-hounds because of their geographic specificity and authenticity, and they're hot with everyday drinkers because of their general yumminess. They're also the perfect wine for any Mother's Day table-and surprisingly affordable if you know what to look for.
First, what are rosé wines? Well, think color wheel. Just like pink is a little white and a little red mixed together, so it goes with rosé-most rosé wines have a little of the spirit of both red and white wines in them, if not full on a little red and a lot of white.
Fresh young white wines are typically made fast and cold; the wine grape clusters are picked in the night or early dawn, kept as cold as possible, smashed and the juice drained away quickly. This is what preserves those bright, clean flavors and fragrances. Fat, wintery reds, on the other hand, are made more like a soup is; they're all smashed together, left to stew and stew so that the various compounds in the grape skins migrate into the liquid of the wine-in the same way that carrot-flavors in a long-cooking stock leave the carrot and enter the broth.
Pink, or rosé, wines tend to split the difference in some way between those two styles, the grape juice might be left for a sort of medium amount of time with the skins, for instance. For food-lovers, this makes rosé a sort of magic entity because it can have the freshness to go with strawberries but the complexity to stand up to roast chicken. I visited local supermarkets and big-box wine shops to find some of the best everyday rosés that will dazzle your mom-and yourself.
Juame-Serra Cristalino Rosé-Brut Non-Vintage, $9
Nothing looks prettier than a flute of something sparkling and pink, and this Cristalino rosé is the thriftiest way to celebrate tastefully. Often found on sale for as little as $7, this slightly mushroomy, slightly sour-cherry scented sparkler is great on its own, and pairs beautifully with cheeses or seafood. Float a raspberry or an edible flower blossom, such as a nasturtium, in each glass for a perfect photo-op.
Borsao 2012 Rose, $9
One of the greatest bargains of the modern supermarket, this classic Spanish wine is great with salty things like olives, ham and cheese, but it also is a nice pair with cheesy egg bakes or big brunch spreads.
Cline Cellars Mouvedre Rosé, $12
Simultaneously meaty, fragrant and bone dry, this California wine is perfect with a mixed grill of meats and veggies and goes surprisingly well with cream sauces too-a truly fantastic (and fascinating) table workhorse.
Astoria Lounge Prosecco, Non-Vintage, $15
Light, pretty, strawberry-fragrant and elegant, this Italian bubbly rosé is a great pick for a Mother's Day heavy on strawberry shortcakes and fun in the sun.
Acrobat 2012 Oregon Rose of Pinot Noir, $15
Fresh and berry-full, this gorgeous bright rosé wine made from Oregon pinot noir grapes is a little salty, a little fruity and all over springtime in a bottle.
General Mills has no affiliation with any of the products mentioned in this article.