Chapoutier Rosé: the perfect wine for an impromptu picnic

click to enlarge A glass of rosé revives the taste buds, much as cleansing rainwaters revive the natural world. - Jez atkinson via Flickr
Jez atkinson via Flickr
A glass of rosé revives the taste buds, much as cleansing rainwaters revive the natural world.

After the rain stops, we will go outside and shake off the blues. After the rain stops, we will go outside and breathe in fresh air. After the rain stops, life will begin again — all after the rain stops. When will the rain stop?

Eventually the rain stopped, even though for only a brief window of time. Oh, but how beautiful the scenery was through those glass windowpanes! The birds flew higher and freer than ever before; the squirrels scampered with newfound energy; the sky offered blue hues that only nature's palette can create. By 5 in the afternoon, it was one of the most beautiful settings one could imagine; time to go outside, breathe in the fresh air and begin living.

After being trapped inside all rainy day long, it was a welcome reprieve to step outside and take in the newly washed world. This is coastal Florida, so there is always a body of water nearby — not a puddle but a real body of water; in this case, the body of water was Tampa Bay and the undulating shoreline that makes up the St. Petersburg waterfront. Great thing about this little area is that dolphins seem to enjoy making a splash here. So it was that we walked along the waterfront enjoying the summer dance of the dolphins after the rain had stopped.

What's better than a walk along the waterfront, with dolphins dancing and birds sweeping their wings overhead in a sky of beautiful blue? A walk along the waterfront, with dolphins dancing and birds sweeping their wings overhead in a sky of beautiful blue while sipping Chapoutier 2010 Belleruche Cote-du-Rhone Rosé (about $12).

A glass of rosé can be a refreshing and lively thing, especially one from the Cote-du-Rhone region of France. This wine in particular is made mainly from Grenache followed by Cinsault and Syrah. Grenache gives the wine its acidic backbone, which makes it tangy on the palate while the Cinsault gives it richness and a long aftertaste. Finally, the Syrah offers rich and creamy berry flavors. The combination yields a crisp combination of citrus, cherry and raspberry.

After the rain stopped, not only did we enjoy the waterfront, we delighted in a picnic. Armed with our Chapoutier Rosé and a basket filled with all the leftovers we could find in the fridge, we sat at a bench along the waterfront. The best part of a good rosé is how it pairs with any number of foods.

In our basket was a chunk of brie, pepperoni, a tomato, half a baguette and other culinary odds and ends. There was also a container of linguine with Alfredo sauce that was cold because we did not think to microwave it before setting out. Last but not least, we threw in a bag of Sausalito cookies, not checking to see whether it was empty or not. Not the most thought-out combination of foods, but not the worst either.

The Chapoutier Rosé played the role of maestro, deftly bringing together all the different flavors in a savory opus. Even the cold linguine made a pleasurable pairing. A glass of rosé after the rain has stopped with your picnic dinner revives the taste buds, much as cleansing rainwaters revive the natural world. The only thing better is finding exactly two cookies (one for you and one for me) in the bag of Sausalitos. If I told you what this milk chocolate/macadamia nut cookie did when paired with the Chapoutier Rosé, it might just start to rain again.

Next time it rains, put a bottle of Chapoutier 2010 Belleruche Cote-du-Rhone Rosé in the fridge to chill while you patiently wait for the rain to stop. The rain always stops, and that is when the celebration begins.

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