Wine Cocktail: Frosé Forever

I guess you can say summer is basically over if you look at a calendar. Kids are back in school and Labor Day is quickly approaching. Despite this, it definitely still feels like summer outside. I don't know about where you live, but here in Charlotte, it feels like 100 degrees every day. Because of that, it's still fun to make it seem like summer! Grill those hamburgers, eat that corn on the cob, wear those white jeans, and drink summery drinks! This frozen rosé drink, aka frosé, that I came across on Basil and Bubbly seemed like the perfect way to toast to the "end" of summer! The best part? It couldn't be any easier to make!

This frozen glass of goodness has four components: rosé (obviously), strawberry simple syrup, lemon juice, and water. Yep, that's it! Here's how you go about making it:

1. Freeze the wine in advance.

The first, and most important step, is to freeze the wine. I chose the Les Vignes des Precheurs 2015 rosé  I had on hand from Total Wine. If possible, choose a darker rosé. I froze my wine for about 5 hours and it was good, but if you have the time, I highly suggest more. Say 6 or 7 hours. I poured the whole bottle wine into a 9x13" Pyrex dish and stuck it straight in the freezer.

2. Make your strawberry simple syrup.

I taught you how to make simple syrup originally in this post, but in case you forgot, boil 1/2 cup of water with 1/2 cup of sugar until sugar is completely dissolved. It won't take but a second for that to happen once the water is boiling! I hulled and quartered half a container of strawberries and plopped them in after the sugar had dissolved. Remove from heat. Let the strawberries impart their heavenly flavor on the syrup for a while. I ran some errands while this was happening, so I let it sit for about an hour. I'd say wait at least 30 minutes for good flavor. Note: you will NOT use the whole amount you made, so save the leftovers for Round 2!

3. Squeeze 2.5 oz of fresh lemon juice and get 1 cup of ice.

Simple enough.

4. Put everything into a blender and blend until smooth.

Frozen wine, 3 oz. simple syrup, 2.5 oz. of lemon juice, and 1 cup of ice. Blend. 

5. Drink and enjoy while jamming out to this gem by Ben Rector.

There you have it. The perfect addition to your next weekend. For better photos of the end product (the glass unfortunately fogged and I didn't like the light inside), be sure to check out my inspiration -- Marianne over at Basil and Bubbly (and Bon Appetit).



Tasting Notes: Domaine Mousset Rosé

Life is busy. So. Busy. That's no excuse, I know, but May and June have been crazy with work travel. I've been on the road six out of the last eight weeks, and it's exhausting, let me tell you. On the plus side, I've been racking up those HHonors points for future fun travel, so score! Now onto the wine... I returned home from my travels last weekend to an empty home (plus a dog). Kevin was off gallivanting around Charleston and I wanted a nice, cold bottle of rosé for the weekend. I stopped in the Total Wine that just happens to be across the way from where our dog was being boarded, and what do you know... they have a huge display of rosé! I browsed through the description cards, liked the sound of the Domaine Mousset, and the price was right. I just hoped it didn't disappoint!

The Facts

  • Producer: Domaine Mousset
  • Region: Côtes du Rhône, France
  • Vintage: 2015
  • Variety: Grenache - 60%, Carignan - 30%, Cinsault - 10%
  • Where I purchased: Total Wine
  • Price: $12.99
  • Eyes: The picture does a pretty good job of showing an accurate color. It may be a bit lighter than it shows, but not much. There's a definite pink tinge or salmon-ish color, which to me gave me an idea of bold flavor. My advice: DON'T fall into that trap! I listened to a great podcast on rosé from Wine For Normal People and the guest, a rosé expert, pointed that out specifically.
  • Nose: This wine was very fragrant, smelling strongly of strawberry and watermelon, if you can believe it. There was also a hint of cherry, but it was very fruity on the nose.
  • Mouth: Wow, STRAWBERRY! That was definitely what stood out the most. Fruit, all fruit. It had good weight and what they call "mouth feel"... wasn't too heavy or too light in body. With it being chilled, the acidity was very nice. I think some people could see this as "sweet", but I really think it's just really fruity. 
  • Thoughts: I am a HUGE fan of this rosé! If you tend to lean toward more of a mineral flavor profile when it comes to white or rosé then this may be too fruity for you, but I love it. I think that it has great flavor and I still find it has enough minerality to be refreshing. This is perfect for the summer and rosé is actually a wine that pairs with a lot so it'd be a great addition to a July 4th BBQ! At the low price of $12.99, this is a must!


Tasting Notes: Schramsberg Brut Rosé

I am super excited to talk about April's "Favorite Friday" choice! This bottle of bubbly holds a very special place in my heart for three reasons: (1) It's delicious and I LOVE sparkling wine, (2) Kevin and I visited Schramsberg two days after getting engaged in Napa, and (3) Kevin and I toasted with the bottle we bought in Napa on our wedding day. Another fun fact is Schramsberg has been served at all official State functions by every US Presidential Administration since Nixon used it in his 1972 "Toast to Peace" with China's Primer Zhou Enali. This sparkling wine is special, and I am so happy to share it with you!

The Facts

  • Producer: Schramsberg Vineyards
  • Region: North Coast
  • Vintage: 2011
  • Variety: 61% Pinot Noir, 39% Chardonnay
  • Where I purchased: This particular bottle was a Christmas gift from my brother, but I know our local Harris Teeter carries it.*
  • Price: $35-40+

*Total Wine carries the Schramsberg brand, but my particular one does not carry Brut Rosé. If you'd like to try out the presidential and famous Blanc de Blanc, head to Total Wine!

  • Eyes: This sparkling wine is a orangeish pink color, and as expected, has lots of bubbles! They are small bubbles, which I've found to be characteristic of "Méthode Traditionnelle" sparkling wines.

    For those that don't know, the traditional method, also know has the méthode Champenoise, is what the winemakers in Champagne, France, use. The base still wine is made into sparkling wine by inserting sugar and yeast into the bottle with the base wine and capping it. The yeast eats the sugar and releases CO2, but since there's nowhere for the CO2 to go, it carbonates the wine. For more information on the different methods of adding bubbles to wine, check out this great article on Wine Folly.
  • Nose: The only thing I really noticed was that this wine had a biscuity aroma. I've heard you can (and should) decant sparkling wines for a bit to really help develop the flavor, so maybe that'd help get more aromas out of the wine. For me, though, I am usually not too concerned about sparkling wine aromas... I'm just anxious to drink it!
  • Mouth: The Brut Rosé is delicious! It's got flavors of citrus and strawberry with notes of dough, which is not abnormal in sparkling wines. I tend to lean toward the fresh and fruity sparklings over biscuit, but this bottle has a good balance of both. It's tart and acidic and refreshing and I love the fruit notes in the wine. 
  • Thoughts: You already know I love this wine. It's part of my "Favorite Friday" series and with my emotional tie to the wine, it's really no surprise. This wine evokes nostalgia and happy memories!
Photos by Lauren Rosenau Photography 

Photos by Lauren Rosenau Photography 

Even for those who didn't have this bottle at their wedding, I think it's a great choice for celebrations, especially if you want to add a little color to the bubbly! Kevin and I always stock up when it goes on sale at Harris Teeter. It's our bubbly of choice (although we also do love their Blanc de Blanc too), and I don't foresee that changing any time soon. If you're ever in Napa, I highly recommend Schramsberg's tour. It's a nice change from all the Cabernet you're inevitably drinking. 


Tasting Notes: My Essential Rosé

One of our favorite local restaurants, Corkbuzz, gave us two complimentary wine cards during a class. The weather has been so beautiful lately, so we had to take advantage and have a drink on a patio somewhere in Charlotte. The guy who helped us recommended this rosé and I absolutely loved the label which was a great start to the glass!

The Facts

  • Producer: my ESSENTIAL wine
  • Region: Provence, France
  • Vintage: 2015
  • Variety: Blend of Grenache, Syrah, Cinsault, Carignan, and Mourvèdre
  • Where I purchased: Local restaurant
  • Price: Glass was $11, but according to my internet search, bottles sell in wine shops for around $15
  • Eyes: This wine was a very pale pink and translucent... it almost looked gold. I expected a rosé to be a little bit darker, but alas, this one was very pale.
  • Nose: I was surprised that this wine had a very faint nose. It smelled like strawberries, minerals, and a hint of banana. Don't think of a strawberry-banana smoothie, but there was definitely a hint of banana on the nose. 
  • Mouth: The rosé was clean and crisp as the guy described. It was easy to drink, but unfortunately, the strawberry flavor I was hoping for based off of the nose did not come through. Yes, there was some strawberry, but I was hoping for more. The faint flavor actually reminded me a bit of bubblegum.
  • Thoughts: Overall, this wine just did not have a ton of flavor. I wanted to branch out and try the trendy rosé route, but my first attempt was not successful. Don't get me wrong, the wine wasn't bad, but I was hoping for more... more fruit, more something. The cute wine label failed me, and I was so disappointed! I have not given up hope on rosé, but I'd probably order a glass of white or Pinot Noir before I order this particular one again.