Pretty in Pink: Rosé Wines from Franck Bonville, Stinson Vineyards, and Donelan Family Wines

Hello Friends,

Just about every day, as wine o'clock approaches, you can find me uncorking or unscrewing a new wine adventure. Being a wine enthusiast, a wine blogger, and someone who appreciates and enjoys the liquid expression of a place, a person’s vision, and Mother Nature’s influence -- I find wine to be one of the most intriguing beverages out there. For me, it is an area of interest that you never run out of new things to taste and learn. The wines selected for this post are all rosés. One is from the Champagne region of France and the other two are still wines (non- sparkling) from Virginia's all-important Monticello appellation and Sonoma County, California. All three, which I recommend seeking out, are excellent accompaniments to a myriad of warm-weather foods and equally enjoyable all on their own. For further information and where you can find these wines, please see my tasting notes below.

Factoid: Even though all Champagne sparkles, not all sparkling wine is Champagne.

Review: Franck Bonville NV Grand Cru Brut Rosé (SRP $40): Let me give you some free advice: Do not wait for special occasions to pop the cork on a bottle of sparkling wine or champagne. This delicious example, composed of 90% Chardonnay and 10% Pinot Noir, is salmon pink in appearance with a persistent mousse of tiny bubbles. It exhibits aromas and flavors of fresh red berries – namely strawberry, alongside subtle notes of brioche, floral perfume, and spice. This is the type of champagne I personally enjoy serving with Sunday brunch – think smoked salmon, fruit salad, or crab cake eggs Benedict. The wine’s beautiful texture, firm acids, and reasonable price point (I found it for $30), make it an excellent option for any occasion and a wide variety of foods. Region: Champagne, France. Other info: ABV 12.5%, cork enclosure). Rating: 91 Points. Click here to find this wine.

Franck Bonville NV Grand Cru Brut Rosé

Review: Stinson Vineyards 2014 Rosé (SRP $19.99): A gorgeous pale salmon pink in color, this rosé, made from 100% Mourvèdre, is fresh with a restrained personality, offering vibrant red berries and citrus fruit flavors along with floral notes and a pinch of white pepper coming through on the back end. In the mouth, it is light and bright with an energetic backbone of acidity, making it extremely flexible food wise. I enjoyed a glass on its own and with bacon wrapped scallops. Crafted by the father and daughter team of Scott and Rachel Stinson, whose family operation specializes in small-lot wines, I recommend putting this duo on your wine radar. Only 175 cases of this wine were produced. Region: Monticello AVA, Virginia. Other info: ABV 13%, fermented and aged sur lie in stainless steel, cork enclosure). Rating: 89 Points. Click here to find this wine.

Stinson Vineyards 2014 Rosé

Review: Donelan 2014 Rosé (SRP $24): When your day calls for something bright and refreshing, look no further than this tasty rosé. A blend of 55% Syrah, 29% Grenache, and 16% Pinot Noir, it pours a lovely pale salmon color with a light pink hue. The wine offers vibrant flavors of red berry fruit and fleshy citrus fruit followed by tropical nuances.  Overall, this is a very appealing wine with driving acidity and terrific verve that’s rounded by a fresh and crisp finish. Made from the saignée method, where a small amount of juice is bled away from the skins to increase the intensity of a red wine, winemaker Joe Nielsen says: “Think of it as the 2014 vintage unplugged – an acoustic version of the reds in barrel.” Approximately 290 cases of this wine were produced. Region: Sonoma County, California. Other info: ABV 13.3%, fermented in neutral barrels, cork enclosure). Rating: 89 Points. Click here to find this wine.

Donelan 2014 Rosé

Have a question about this post? Feel free to drop me an e-mail at or hit me up on Facebook or Twitter. Stay tuned ...more to come. Happy Sipping, my friends! Disclosure: This wine was provided for review. Thoughts are my own.

Live, Love, Laugh, Tweet, Sip, Enjoy!

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