February’s obsession: sparkling rosé wine

February’s obsession: sparkling rosé wine

by Karen Bradbury
Stripes Europe

There are many reasons I love February. The days are growing longer and milder, making it a great time for all my favorite wintertime activities, skiing and skating first and foremost. And knowing winter will be over soon gives me added impetus to get out and enjoy the remainder of the season.

It’s also the month of love, and Valentine’s Day has always had a special place in my heart. Even over the many years I’ve found myself without a special someone, I’ve found it a day worth celebrating. In the absence of someone to wine and dine me, it’s meant to get together with best friends, cook a fancy meal and maybe, grow sentimental over a bottle or two of wine.

This year being no exception, I’ll cook up something yummy and serve it alongside the bounty of the grape. In keeping with the day, I will coordinate my chosen beverage with the color of the predominant Valentine’s Day motif, the heart. (Technically speaking, hearts may be red, but in my book, they’re pink.)

Which means the wine I go for must be a rosé. My fondness for rosés goes back to my college days, when a bottle of pink Zinfandel was as luxurious as things got. Many people consider rosé a neither-here-nor-there choice, but I like it. It’s spicy and uncomplicated and meant to be enjoyed as is. You don’t need to reach for big words to describe its bouquet and nuances.

But let’s not forget it’s a holiday, and for that we need: bubbles! For what’s the holiday of love without effervescence? Cue the classical music, draw the curtains and allow this year’s beverage of choice to take a bow: sparkling rosé wine.

I’ve narrowed it down to sparkling rosé, but choices remain to be made. I won’t go for Champagne, which is all too pricey. While I could choose a Spanish cava or Italian prosecco, as I’m based in Germany, I’ll likely go for the homegrown favorite fizz, the Sekt.

But which rosé Sekt should I go for? That of a small-scale, local vintner or one of Germany’s best sellers? Dry or sweet? One of a tender blush pink or a bold coppery tone? I can’t get this wrong, so I’d better start sampling. Better yet, I’ll cook two meals this year: lunch for a friend and dinner for my husband, both accompanied by copious toasts to our health and well-being.

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