How did Provence become known as the heartland of Rosé? What does it mean to be part of the Rosé lifestyle? Why should you take a trip to the Provence wine region? Does the colour of Rosé give you a clue into its taste? Which unexpected but mouthwatering food pairing should you try with your next glass of Rosé?
In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with wine writer Jill Barth, who is also a Provence Wine Master through the Wine Scholar Guild.
You can find the wines we discussed here.
- How can you describe the Rosé lifestyle?
- Why is Rosé perfect for you to enjoy year-round?
- What tasting profile should you expect with Tavel Rosé?
- How did Provence become the heartland of Rosé?
- Why will travelling to Provence have you feeling like your inside a storybook?
- How do the appellations affect which types of Rosé you can get from Provence?
- What does the paleness of Rosé tell you about it?
- How can you describe the colour of Rosé, using the official terminology??
- What’s unique about Oeil de Perdrix?
- Why was Jill drawn to focus on Provence in particular?
- What Provence and wine-related themes should you expect in Jill’s forthcoming novel?
- Can you consider all pink wines to equivalent to Rosé?
- Why did Chateau d’Esclans’ Whispering Angel Rosé become so popular in Canada?
- What unique traits can you look out for on bottles of Rosé?
- Why should you consider wine as a barometer of how we live?
- How can you pair Rosé with food?
- Should you pair poutine with a glass of Rosé?
- How does the mistral influence French winemaking?
- Why has it never been a better time for you to be a wine enthusiast?
- Which less popular wines should you give a try?
- How are American wine regions evolving?
- How can you take advantage of wine auctions without leaving home?
- Why is a decanter Jill’s favourite wine gadget?
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About Jill Barth
Jill Barth is a writer focused on wine creators – with culture, food, community, ecology, and travel, pivotal to the stories in her contributor column at Forbes digital. She is also a Provence Wine Master through the Wine Scholar Guild and received a fellowship to the Symposium for Professional Wine Writers.
Jill is the founder and author of L’Occasion, a blog that honours the ways we drink, make, and contemplate wine. L’Occasion was awarded the Best Overall and Best Writing from the prestigious Wine Blog Awards and was a finalist for Millesima’s Blog Awards in food and wine pairing. Jill is also a wine country travel expert panellist and contributor for USA TODAY’s 10Best. Her work has appeared in Decanter, Palate Press, Luxe Provence, Courrier International, Provence WineZine, and Perfectly Provence.
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Transcript & Takeaways
Welcome to episode 80!
What does it mean to be part of the Rosé lifestyle? How did Provence become known as the heartland of Rosé and why should you visit that region? Does the colour of Rosé give you a clue into its taste? Which weird but wonderful food pairing should you try with your next glass of Rosé?
That’s exactly what we’ll learn in this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast. We’re chatting with Jill Barth, a terrific wine writer and author, as well as a specialist in rose wines.
This conversation first aired on my regular Facebook live video show last year, so keep that in mind as the context for Jill’s comments. She occasionally shows us things on camera, so you’ll want to watch the video version for that.
Also, you’ll hear me respond to viewer questions. You can be part of that conversation every second Wednesday at 7 pm eastern.
I’ll include a link as to where you can find us as well as the video version of this conversation in the show notes at nataliemaclean.com/80.
If you want to discover mouth-watering juicy wines and what to pair with them, sign up for my free, online video wine class the 5 Wine & Food Pairing Mistakes That Can Ruin Your Dinner (and how to fix them forever!)
Go to nataliemaclean.com/class and choose a time and date that work for you. I look forward to seeing you inside the class!
Okay, on with the show!
You can also watch the video interview with Jill that includes bonus content and behind-the-scenes questions and answers that weren’t included in this podcast.
Well, there you have it! I hope you enjoyed this chat with Jill Barth.
Here are my takeaways:
- I love how Jill describes the rose lifestyle, both ancient and new and on both sides of the Atlantic, including Hamptons Gatorade.
- She provides great regional context for us in terms of the major French appellations producing rose. Side note: an appellation is a legally defined and protected geographical region that indicates where grapes for a particular wine region, and often how they’re grown, with laws governing irrigation, grape types and so on. So 90% of wine with an appellation designation in Provence is rose and 100% is dry. Tavel in the Rhone Valley only makes rose for its appellated wines. Those two tips alone will help you better understand the style of roses from those regions that you’re buying even if you haven’t tried them before.
- We chat about the craze over the palest rose, and that it doesn’t necessarily mean the best or lightest rose, though it has that perception. Similarly, darker-hued roses are necessarily sweet or more full-bodied. Personally I love the dark, dry roses of Tavel.
- The spectrum of colour for rose is unlike any other type of wine from peach to cranberry with more romantic descriptors in between, such as ballet slipper, onion skin and eye of the partridge or oeil de perdrix.
- We chat about the commercial success of Whispering Angel and Miraval, the glitter factor behind their branding, yet they are still well-made wines.
- And finally, Jill talks about more general wine trends in 2019, which remain just as relevant today including the rise in popularity of older wine regions with new styles including Greece, Portugal, and Germany as well as wine categories such as cru Beaujolais, Lambrusco and sparkling reds made from Shiraz and Tannat.
If you liked this episode, please tell a friend about it, especially one who’s interested in the fascinating wine tips that Jill shared. If you’re looking for links to Jill’s website, her books, the wines we tasted, a full transcript of our conversation, the video version of this chat and where you can find us on Facebook live every second Wednesday at 7 pm. You’ll find all of that in the show notes at nataliemaclean.com/80.
Finally, if you want to connect with me personally, join me in a free online video class at nataliemaclean.com/class.
Thank-you for taking the time to join me here. I hope something great is in your glass this week, perhaps a lovely rose!
Jill Barth 0:00
There is a preference for a pale Rosé, I think that that’s the consumers idea that it embodies freshness and lightness. There also seems to be misconception that it’s going to be sweeter if it’s darker. And that’s not true at all. I’ve heard people I’m sharing wine with and they’ll see a dark Rosé. And they’ll think, oh, I don’t like sweet wines. But it’s to do with the varieties of the grape and how long that juice has any amount of skin contact.
Natalie MacLean 0:25
That makes total sense. People do seem
Jill Barth 0:28
to like the light ones these days for I think, reasons of aesthetics, not necessarily the influences of flavour, as much
Natalie MacLean 0:34
as you might think. Sure. And is there anything to the fact that if it’s a darker Rosé, it’s going to be more full body did it get more skin contact, therefore more flavour or is that to a generalisation that doesn’t always play out?
Jill Barth 0:48
It probably doesn’t always play out, but it would hold true that darker skinned grapes that experience more skin contact during the winemaking are going to impart more of that colour.
Natalie MacLean 1:05
Do you have a thirst to learn about wine? Do you love stories about wonderfully obsessive people, hauntingly beautiful places, and amusingly awkward social situations? Oh, that’s the blend here on the unreserved wine talk podcast. I’m your host, Natalie McLean. And each week, I share with you unfiltered conversations with celebrities in the wine world, as well as confessions from my own tipsy journey as I write my third book on this subject. I’m so glad you’re here. Now pass me that bottle please. And let’s get started. Welcome to Episode 80. What does it mean to be part of the Rosé lifestyle? How did performance become known as the heartland of Rosé and why should you visit that region does The colour of Rosé gives you a clue to its taste. Which weird but wonderful food pairings should you try with your next glass of Rosé. That’s exactly what we’re going to learn in this episode of The unreserved wine talk podcast. we’re chatting with Jill Barth, a terrific wine writer and author, as well as a specialist in Rosé wines. This conversation first aired on my regular Facebook Live video show last year, so keep that in mind as the context for Jill’s comments. She occasionally shows us things on the camera, so you’ll want to watch the video version for that. Also, you’ll hear me respond to viewer questions. You can be part of that conversation every second Wednesday at 7pm. Eastern. I’ll include a link as to where you can find us as well as the video version of this conversation in the show notes at Natalie MacLean comm forward slash ad. If you want to discover mouthwatering juicy Rosés and what to pay with them, sign up for my free online video wine class. The five food and wine pairing mistakes that can ruin your dinner and how to fix them forever. Go to Natalie MacLean comm forward slash class and choose a time of day that work for you. I look forward to seeing you there. Okay, on with the show.
Natalie MacLean 3:24
Let me get going and tell you about our guests tonight. Very excited. She is wine columnist for Forbes and a wine country travel expert for USA Today. She’s the founder and author of location, you’re going to have to excuse my accent a, an award winning digital magazine location, l apostrophe occasion that celebrates the ways we drink, make and contemplate wine. She’s also a province wine master through the wine scholar Guild, and she received a fellowship to the symposium for professional wine writers very prestigious and has one new Awards for her writing and websites. And she joins me now from her home in Chicago. Welcome Jill Barth. Hello.
Jill Barth 4:08
Hi, Amy. It’s great for you to be here. We really are looking forward to this conversation. You have so many areas of expertise Jill. So let’s kick it off with Rosé. Let me ask you first which Rosé Are you drinking there? I have Rosé from Provence as you would guess. It’s from a seventh generation winemaking family in Provence, there must Academy I’ll show you the grape bottle. And they’re by Mount St. Victoire, which is the big mountain that inspired stays on. So you’ll see that in the painting. So we’ve got tonnes of history with the region and I thought that’d be point for today.
Natalie MacLean 4:45
You were so on trend, just like Rosé itself. So let’s talk about Rosé because, you know, it’s been climbing in popularity, but it just seems to be on this nonstop trajectory. What do you think is the Rosé lifestyle
Jill Barth 4:58
problems All rooms as well? Really the Hallmark I think that kind of kicked off the lifestyle and how this really happened was people from around the world Americans, people from Britain would come and spend these great summers in Provence where they drink Rosécea as a matter of course and have for generations and generations. It’s something that’s so tempting in the summertime. So it’s got that good, refreshing quality, just those good aromatics, some citrus and acids. So they drink it during the summer and it kind of was reminiscent of those experiences. Summertime put her on the beach. Hmm, it really caught on when some bigger name brands capitalised on that in some way, bringing it to places like Miami and the Hamptons, and the younger generation was able to afford a lot of the Rosés and it just fit in with that lifestyle. So that’s kind of the Rosé lifestyle, but there’s a lot of great history with it, too. It’s kind of cool that we’re talking about this to kind of go on both sides of it. The old interview.
Natalie MacLean 5:57
Yeah, I love that it’s trendy and yet it’s ancient. I saw him one of your pieces. I believe it was in the Hamptons, which is on Long Island where generally affluent New Yorkers go to vacation. They call it Hamptons Gatorade. I just love that.
Jill Barth 6:12
Yeah, it seems like summer water or Hamptons Gatorade, or you’ll hear these kind of like laid back associations, but a lot of people are drinking it around now too. So you’ll find like people that are dedicated to it. I’ve had it all winter. They’ve got it ready to go. So
Natalie MacLean 6:30
it’s pretty cool. So it’s not a wine anymore like wearing white past Labour Day that they just sort of drop as the weather cools down. Why do you think Rosé does work year round?
Jill Barth 6:40
No, it’s really food friendly. And I think once a lot of people start sampling it with food, they find that it goes with so many things and that refreshing acid just carries it through for some new great meals. That’s a big part of it, too. There’s more on the market now than ever so people are able to get it outside of that first release. You know it’s on the shelves longer. It’s around. So I think that makes a big difference.
Natalie MacLean 7:02
I always find that Rosé is terrific because, for me it delivers a lot of the flavours of red wine without the tannin, the oak and the alcohol like it’s got the best of both worlds.
Jill Barth 7:13
Yes. You know, it’s made with red wine grapes. So it does have some body to it, but it’s got that refreshing quality that white wine drinkers often go to when they don’t want to deal with tannins or high alcohol. So, yes, make a lot of people happy.
Natalie MacLean 7:26
Yes, it’s a bridging wine. Elizabeth mcsween. Tavel was my first exposure to Rosé got me hooked. So to Val and maybe you can tell us a bit about this too. It’s that region of the room that’s close to or just right above. I guess Provence is a jewel.
Jill Barth 7:42
Yeah. So Val is in what’s known as cultural Provence. So it still has a lot of the old traditions and you’ll find this way of life still pervades that region. But technically speaking from a wine classification purposes, smell is grown. But so many people love it. It’s God’s such Great, beautiful in the last big flavours that are just so impressive well made. So people that tastes a Val usually stick with that and they’ll say that they love it forever just they make great wine
Natalie MacLean 8:11
and develop does it only produce Rosé there’s no red or white wines there as
Jill Barth 8:16
as far as their appellation status. It’s just Rosé. So down in Provence, they function like the rest of France, where they have Apple ated wine regions, and with an appellation, it’s just Rosé, but you know, you can find them working with red and white wine grapes, making things out of the appellation in that Southern Rhone area. So right. Oh, yeah. There was some story about one of the kings I can’t remember but he was riding through with his perception and he said something about to Val, they’re the best wines in the world. Every wine should be to Val was just sounded really like a good politician. It should say that about the wines of the region. But
Natalie MacLean 8:53
anyway, you know, you’ve talked about the fact that there are more Rosés available which should definitely be driving sales. Why does Provence in particular come to mind when we think about Rosé? It’s kind of like the Heartland. But why did it get that reputation?
Jill Barth 9:09
I think it’s something like, around 90% of the wines that they produce are indeed Rosé somewhere around there. And this has been part of how they do things. I think, lately, everyone’s trying to get more Roséanne to the market. But that’s not just a trend for the winemakers there, they’ve done this going back to, there was Greek settlements, followed by the Romans. And when these early winemaking cultures came to Provence, they were making this direct press wine to drink right away. So they’ve been making Rosé wines for ages. They understand how to make it, they’re not making it as a whim, like maybe in other places as a product to get to the market. It’s just so native to them. So I think that’s got to be a big part of it. And I think also, anyone that’s been to Provence loves to just observe Work the atmosphere and Rosé just fits into that. So people usually want to drink Rosé while they’re there and they definitely want to bring that feeling back.
Natalie MacLean 10:08
Yeah. Okay, I’m gonna name drop for a little bit just once here. I had Rosé with Peter Malay. Is it male or Malay? Man, I should go. Yes. So it has since passed away unfortunately but a year in Provence, that book, I loved it, but I had to meet him while he was in Provence. It was just like wow, he’s actually going to meet me but I put him into my second book the last chapter but as you say, it’s this lifestyle and you’re sitting out on a beast route. It’s like a pop up storybook. Everybody’s sitting out on the decks or the Bistro patios, drinking Rosé it really is a lifestyle. But performance does it only produce dry Rosé like there are no sweet styles or is there sparkly any other types or is all the Rosé a dry still, Rosé
Jill Barth 10:51
is basically all dry. So Jose, there are people that make a sparkling wine. They don’t make it again within that appellation. rules. So the Alp guidelines, which is how it is if you’re used to French wines from elsewhere how you know, maybe only a certain set of grapes can be grown in a region or certain rules as far as the wine is outside of that, but there is a wider appellation like a larger they call an IGP that people can go out of that to get more creative. So there are people making sparkling wines, you can find them and they also hoping to maybe make an appellation for sparkling wine. So it’s something that I think they realise that they want to make and they’re making nice ones and people love sparkling wine, it kind of really goes very well if the profile, possibly some of the folks that are listening in may say if they’ve been able to get their hands on a bottle or two of sparkling wine from Provence because it is out there, but it just wouldn’t technically be within the appellation.
Natalie MacLean 11:51
Yeah, well, that makes sense. I mean, Rosé is the drink of summer and I would think sparkling is right up that same alley. Now what about The things that I’ve noticed is that there’s an obsession with getting the palest Rosé, there’s even a book called The palest Rosé. It reminds me of the obsession with getting the smallest bubbles in champagne. Does it make a difference? Like is paler, better when it comes to Jose?
Jill Barth 12:17
Technically, it’s probably not better. But there is a preference for appeal Rosé. And I think that that’s the consumers idea that it embodies freshness and refreshment and lightness. There also seems to be a misconception. And I don’t know where this comes from, but that if it’s darker, that it’s going to be sweeter. And that’s not true at all. But some people will see it. I’ve heard people I’m sharing wine with and they’ll see a dark Rosé and they’ll think oh, why don’t like sweet wines, but it’s not. A lot of it has to do with the varieties of the grape and how long that juice has any amount of skin contact.
Natalie MacLean 12:52
Right That makes total sense.
Jill Barth 12:54
People don’t seem to like the light ones these days for I think reasons of aesthetics, you know, not necessarily That influences the flavour as much as you might
Natalie MacLean 13:02
think. Sure. And is there anything to the fact that if it’s a darker Rosé, it’s going to be more full body? Did it get more skin contact therefore more flavour or is that to a generalisation that doesn’t always play out.
Jill Barth 13:16
It probably doesn’t always play out but it would hold true that darker skinned grapes that experience more skin contact during the winemaking are going to impart more of that colour. The winemakers don’t want to pull back on that too much to benefit the colour and remove those aromatics and the fruit flavours. So making a Rosé that checks all those boxes is challenging. So well maybe Jose that has this beautiful colour and aromatics and the freshness if you get something like that it’s a skilled wine and just something to enjoy because that balance is so important between colour and that profile. That’s a great observation. So there’s a centre for wine research in Provence that’s codified all the colours where does Start in terms of descriptors for colour, since it’s such a big point with Rosé and where does it end? What’s the darkest colour? This is so cool. The Centre for Rosé research is like one of a kind. There’s really nothing else like that in the world for many kinds of wines and for Rosé they kind of lead the charge. So the palest on the scale is what they call peach or peche in French, so peach and then it goes down you know between five and 10 different main colour points and the darkest is English current. So those are words that maybe don’t connect with what you see and what you think. But this chart and if we can make it available is out there for people to see in the centre for Rosé research publishes it so you can see the whole scale and it not only goes from dark to light, but it’s also gradients of pinks and yellow and the orange scale in between. So it’s really interesting and it’s full of beautiful colours. Oh
Natalie MacLean 14:56
yeah, I always love ballet slipper and and you skin. I mean, some of these are just very poetic, so evocative. And then I’ve heard of you probably more familiar with this. I’m going to massacre this but oil
Jill Barth 15:09
predicts, although I have the Partridge, I’ve heard many different stories about winemakers trying to capture that name. And I think it’s that sort of maybe luminous that comes with it. I know that
Natalie MacLean 15:22
and I was just on Wikipedia, looking this up it references as you say, that pale pink colour of the eye of the Partridge but they say in the death throes like it’s what they I turns to as it’s dying anyway. That’s very, very specific. But Jill, how did you fall in love with wines from Provence? Because you’ve taken it to the next level with the wine scholar gildan become a scholar. So why Provos? What drew you to that?
Jill Barth 15:49
It kind of goes way back actually, when I was in college, my French teacher was from Marseille, a big city on the coast of the Mediterranean. He taught us a lot of Provence called Along with learning the language so when I carried French into my adult life, it was always kind of with a nod to Provence, I had my eye on the region like you, I’d read Peter meals, books and other things on the topic of Provence and the region. And I’m also a fiction writer. And so I’d written about winemakers from Provence because I loved the area so much and doing research for the novel that I subsequently finished. My husband and I visited France and spent some time in Provence meeting with people and trying to learn how they do things and what it really feels like to be there. And from that, I was able to gather enough information to start freelance writing about what I learned, and that’s really how it started. So I would say it’s because people that were willing to share their stories with me, you know, it just sort of feels like a bit of a spiritual home in a lot of ways and that has just carried my interest indefinitely. I’m always ready to learn more.
Natalie MacLean 16:53
So is your book set in Provence then and does it involve a lot of wine and wine drinking?
Jill Barth 16:59
Yes. So the novel I finished is about winemakers in Provence. It’s actually set during the Second World War, and stems from the idea of trying to preserve wine traditions in a time of conflict. So really cool stories behind that because it’s actually based on some true stories.
Natalie MacLean 17:16
That’s great. When can we get this book?
Jill Barth 17:19
Well, I’m in the process of getting it published. So I will keep everyone posted.
Natalie MacLean 17:23
Yes, please. Oh, that sounds like a good follow up to Peter meals books. Linda says when I was growing up, my mom and friends occasionally drank but two throws a inexpensive it’s from Portugal, but consistent and the shape of the bottle was unique. I’m not a fan but memories of my mom with her girlfriends make me smile. What’s your take Jill on all of these other Rosés like from white Zinfandel to the tooth to everything else? This is a very open question. But what do you think about all these different types of pink wines?
Jill Barth 17:53
The pink wine is really cool. There are wines being made everywhere that are Rosés, and actually So interesting. The most read article on my blog is something I can’t think exactly the name. I think it’s Rosé or Roséto. Is there a difference or what’s the difference and Roséto is the Italian phrase and then also Spain is similar word Roséto, the D for Rosé basically a pink wine. And that article gets read so much. I think it is people trying to decide is pink wine all Rosé or searching for more information about Rosé a wine from around the world?
Natalie MacLean 18:31
Yeah, trying to sort out the differences. And I think to that, going back to the popularity of Provence, it’s easy to remember that you’re safe so to speak. If you don’t want to drink a sweet wine, everything from Provence is dry. So you see that on the label, you know you’re getting a dry Rosé, not that there’s anything wrong with off dry or even sweet Rosé. I mean, most of the population loves I mean we talk dry drink sweet And there’s a lot of pleasure to be had from an off dryer. Sweet. Rosé, one of the ones that has made a big impact and you’ve written about this from Provence is whispering Angel. It’s huge here in Canada as well as the United States. Why did that wind get so much traction? I mean, it’s not an interesting name, but was there something about it that really made it take off?
Jill Barth 19:18
It is well made. It’s an lovely wine could have enjoyed it as well as hordes of people. Many, many people drink it and liked it. It’s a well made wine by a skilled winemaker with great grapes. They’ve got a set of wines, that whispering angel is just one of the shift to the cloud wind. So they had kind of a nice portfolio that people could buy up a little bit which I think helps some of the more expensive ones on the market. They also make a lot so there was a lot available. I think they realised market and took advantage of that. So there was great business with that. And, you know, I can remember going to tastings when that wine started to rise in popularity and people wanted to taste it had a great buzz around it, like you said the name. Another thing, the name is easy to understand, you know, it grabs your attention, which I think can be a struggle sometimes when the name has too much of a foreign quality for people to put it on their tongue. So the order something that they can say. So whispering Angel just had this great package, and it was really adopted by that lifestyle of Rosé, you know what they would say at the time they were calling like the millennial drinkers or millennial pink. I think it went beyond that. But I think it caught on to that where it was being photographed and spread around. And so it just wrote a wave. People really like it. It’s a nice wine.
Natalie MacLean 20:40
It’s beautiful. Here in Canada, at least it’s jumped in price every time it’s released. I mean, it’s just people still are soaking it up. The other one that’s really popular here, although it’s not prevalence, I don’t think is mere Val, which was formerly or still currently owned by brangelina, brad and angelina jolie. Never sadly No more. Ooh, got custody of that. That wine. Do you know, from
Jill Barth 21:03
what I know, I understand they both still own it. join others business partners on that. Okay, well, there
Natalie MacLean 21:08
you go. But it’s made by the parent brothers of shadow Castile so of course down Valley so it’s top notch, another beautiful package, I must say.
Jill Barth 21:17
Yeah, exactly that same combination of enough glitter factor and star quality but a great product behind it. So it’s not just a quick sell. It is something people tasted in love. So it’s kind of got it all from that perspective.
Natalie MacLean 21:31
I love that glitter factor. And yet Brangelina they don’t have their name anywhere on the bottle, which is to their credit, I think they’re not cashing in on their celebrity. Another one is domain ot. And of course it’s that curvy bottle is that something that’s ancient and traditional, that curvy bottle or is it just a domain thing? There’s a
Jill Barth 21:52
traditional bottle, the curvy kind of, they call it a Skittle Skittles shaped bottle and then there’s also a central pay box. That has a somewhat similar shape. So that sort of fancy bottle and I also noticed that they get these a lot of the fancy last stoppers. Now you’ll find something a little bit extra with the closure so makes it look really nice.
Natalie MacLean 22:13
One of my favourite is Gerard Bertrand. They wrote the Rosés Rosé and because it’s got this lovely elegant glass stopper and then if you turn the bottle upside down, they’ve shaped the glass into a Rosé and what I’m finding is a lot of people tell me once they finished the Rosé a they use it as a water decanter. It’s beautiful. It is gorgeous. It’s all about lifestyle, but still not in a frivolous way. Like you know, it’s about enhancing life. And
Jill Barth 22:38
you know, and Jorah Bertrand does biodynamic wine growing. They’re really an interesting place. So they’ve got the package but again, a great product that is sustainable and beautiful and hospitality is fantastic.
Natalie MacLean 22:51
And in one of your stories, you commented on how wine is a barometer of how we live and I think this ties right into it like some of your opposite or of the people you’re interviewing is that we’re thinking about wine as slow part of the meal, not something that is just something that knock back and for the alcoholic content, it’s part of conversation and a slow meal and I just think Rosé fits that so beautifully.
Jill Barth 23:16
Yeah, take your time and enjoy it with somebody love.
Natalie MacLean 23:20
Alright, so Jill, what do you think for pairings
Jill Barth 23:23
it can go with anything I think on one side like a roast chicken with a good are lots of herbs, something very herbal which is so pronounced to have a great herbal flavour, but I also love it with a baguette, fresh tomatoes, even a handful of salted almonds, something simple. That’s the beauty of it. There’s so many great things. I mean it is good with the edge and that’s another thing that pairs great with vegetables. So it’s just so seasonal for a lot of the fresh foods and I love that simplicity freshness. Just even salted almonds are nuts.
Natalie MacLean 23:58
That’s it. I can feel the sun on my shoulders now we’re on the deck. Linda, is there a food you would not pair with Rosé?
Jill Barth 24:08
Mm hmm, good question. I haven’t had anything that I would definitely say no to. And in fact, I just did something with another wine writer friend of mine, David Crowley, and he challenged us to pair with Chile and actually had actually another currency with Chile that needs to agree so I haven’t found anything that I’m saying no to just yet.
Natalie MacLean 24:28
So I would think that the temperature of the wine the Rosé a and the lack of tannins and alcohol would kind of temper the heat of the chilli if it was a spicy hot chilli. Yeah. And the only thing I would put out there but you know Cindy saying it worked well with burgers is just heavy meat dishes. I don’t know I’m just saying maybe maybe there would be a weight difference but maybe not because it’s about what you like. is probably
Jill Barth 24:50
true but it does go really well was steak free. If you can get a good steak fried and a glass of Rosé a that’ll be perfect parents so heavy on the beef but it’s
Natalie MacLean 25:01
Yeah, I’m gonna have to go eat soon. Jeff burrows. We’re both Provos and Jill Barth fans.
Jill Barth 25:07
Yeah, just another wine writer too. So my goodness, yeah, we have a group of wine writers that kind of band together once a month. We’re called the French wine files. Do you guys have a public site, we all publish on our own blog. So if any of you come onto my blog, you can find all the French wine files content going back years, because we link to each other’s blogs every time. It’s really fun. And we’ll do a different part of France, or we might bend it a little bit. It’ll still be dealing with French wines, but it may not be a region it may be something a little bit more specific than just a region but once a month, so if you go to my blog, you’ll be able to find out more about that.
Natalie MacLean 25:46
And your blog is the URL.
Jill Barth 25:49
So it’s my name, Jill barth.wordpress.com. I still have my original blog with WordPress from Yep, so and I’m pretty happy with it. So I don’t want to mess up. messing up. So that’s how you’ll find it. Or you can probably Google my name and it would chicag Jobar mine and you’ll be able to find it.
Natalie MacLean 26:06
You guys are so collegial. That’s great. I love that. Lin. Whoo thinking protein, protein and a good pairing with Rosé. Do you know protein Jill, or Canadian specialty heart attack special?
Jill Barth 26:19
Tell me about it. I think I know it’s kind of a mix of various flavours and it’s
Natalie MacLean 26:22
a mix of everything that can kill you. So it’s french fries, and then there’s gravy and then there’s cheese curds that are melted in it. So it’s a really really rich heavy dish traditionally from Quebec, but we enjoy it across Canada. You know, Lynn I think even though it’s rich and having kind of greasy, I think Rosé might be a nice to cut through the fat of it.
Jill Barth 26:44
Yeah, we’re all gonna be so hungry. I know. I just I’m chomping at the bit here.
Natalie MacLean 26:49
And Annie says being a retired winemaker from Sonoma in the 70s we were Rosé snubs. ie White’s infidel. Yeah, the whole Zinfandel clan was the first obligation of white is to be read. But of course, I mean it was set her whole mood changed all of that by introducing incredibly popular white Zinfandel, which is a different animal but still very delicious and enjoyed. I wanted to just chat briefly before we leave Provence and Rosé because I wanted to get to some of these more general wind trends that you’ve written about. There’s the Mistral that famous wind that whips through Provence but also the Rhone Valley. It’s been clocked at like 185 kilometres an hour. I’m not sure what that means in miles, but it’s really up there. What does that do that big wind to the vines that vineyards, the grapes,
Jill Barth 27:40
it is so beneficial because it dries out any humidity, that mildew that you hear, you know, it’s a problem everywhere. Then your managers winemakers having to spray to try to keep this downy mildew off. It just blows all that out. It’s almost like a hairdryer, you know, just pushing through drying in and out. You That’s where you’ll find a lot of domains and estates that can practice biodynamic organics, because that wind just comes in cleans out all that extra moisture. So it can be hard on the vines, like you said, it’s fast and powerful. I mean, it’s just nature. So we’re taking advantage of what’s there. But the benefits tend to outweigh that. They’ll say it’s kind of the claim to fame for being able to be sustainable, because it clears out that humidity.
Natalie MacLean 28:24
I love that a blow dryer. It’s like a blowout bar, you know, when you get your hair done, but for the grapes, and you know, I’ve heard too that it’s often just a few hours or a day or something, but it can go on for a week. And there’s been in literature at least the mistrial has been known to drive people insane and that even murder is forgiven after the mistrial, because it drives everybody crazy for some sort
Jill Barth 28:45
of reason. Yeah, it’s a real legend. Yeah, if you’re there, if any of you have been in Provence with the mistrial, I have to take a video because everything is just sideways and you’ll see gnarly Old Olive Trees and the older ones And you’ll just see, they formed the shape of being windswept.
Natalie MacLean 29:06
Yeah, dramatic. Wow. All right. So let us turn to wine trends more generally, you’ve written a lot about trends and what’s coming. Why is 2019 a great time to be a wine drinker? Gil,
Jill Barth 29:20
when I was doing some research for 2019, trying to see what people are interested in, people are looking for that discovery category, it seems that people want to try something new. And I think that’s what’s exciting. And it’s exciting for different regions that don’t have the publicity or maybe the volume, but they’re making something interesting. And now is the time that I think people want to discover something new, there seems to be a real interest in that when we write about something obscure, it seems to get people’s attention. And I think there’s momentum there, which I think is really good for all of us with a little bit of great diversity, which is really important to at this time where we’re looking at some regions dealing with climate change. Maybe we need to plant something different. So people are tuned in to the idea that something different is exciting.
Natalie MacLean 30:05
And so what would be some of the areas that are new, different exciting fit into discovery often underpriced? What would be some of those regions or grapes? I’ve seen a good
Jill Barth 30:15
interest towards Portuguese wines and Greek wines, which are not necessarily hard to get or new, but I would be willing to bet most Americans, Canadians, probably people, even in parts of Europe, don’t have a lot of that in their cellar necessarily. Those seem to be pretty popular. And I think making waves I think, German wines having that cooler climate ability to kind of climb up a little bit higher in the cooler climates. I think you’ll see more of those gaining attention. Obviously, Germany’s not undiscovered, but certain pockets, I think, have a little bit of an advantage because they’re cooler climates and they’re producing like that low alcohol, fresh acidity that people are looking for. Almost like Rosé Yeah. Beaujolais crew Beaujolais, I’ve noticed a big interest in that Kind of people looking for a little bit deeper besides the Nobu. Beaujolais seems like the light reds, bubbly reds, a lot of interest in that which there’s not a tonne of them. So if you’re a winemaker out there making a sparkling red I think people are ready for it and excited about that.
Natalie MacLean 31:16
Is that mostly like the Shiraz sparkling from Australia?
Jill Barth 31:20
That’s a really good one. Probably one of the main names I’ve noticed good attention to Lambrusco that you know less of sugar high quality Lambrusco that people are rediscovering and it’s so great with foods and they’re excited by that there’s some coming out of California too that are really great. So I think there are pockets of this but when people get their hands on one Oh, sparkling tonight from our way I got to taste one and everyone was like whoa, how do we get this so I just think people are excited by it a little bit different sparkling which people love right now.
Natalie MacLean 31:51
And champagne, you know, so there’s so many alternatives of course we’ve got Kava from Spain and PRosécco from Italy but the US, Canada and all of these Other pockets that you’re mentioning produce these sparkling wines that a third of the price or less, but really remarkably great quality. And I think you mentioned the crew. Beaujolais is another example of a great medium bodied red. That’s a nice, affordable alternative to Pinot Noir, which tends to be a lot more expensive. So lots of great possibilities there. And when it comes to the United States, one of your columns, you’re saying it’s not so much about new wire agents as it is about evolution. What were you getting out there? What’s happening with American wine regions?
Jill Barth 32:33
You know, one of the interesting things, a big report that comes out of California that Silicon Valley Bank report on wine, I don’t know if that’s getting as much attention in Canada as it does here. But they come out with a report every year and they predict for the year and then they look back and they’re like, here’s what we got wrong, but here’s just a tonne of data and they do a great panel. So they talk about what they’ve discovered. And they were talking about how tasting rooms in places like New York and Virginia. are getting an increase in visitors. Either their local folks are coming out more to drink wines, or perhaps more people are coming in. And these aren’t new, you know, they’re not undiscovered, but they’re evolving maybe into that next generation of really considerable travel destinations or places to purchase wine. So I think it’s exciting for some of the places that are already developed. And they know they’re making great wine, like New York, Texas, Virginia, even Michigan, I just did a really cool kind of deep dive into Michigan. So they’re now trying to make their name known a little bit more.
Natalie MacLean 33:34
And they’re getting to know what grapes work for them in their soils, really digging down literally, to see what works and with local tourism, as you say, they’ve got a market that they don’t necessarily have to ship everything people are starting to come to them. Now a lot of tasting room direct to consumer sales for those types of wineries. And that circles back to the question of why it’s never been a better time to be a wine drinker because we’ve got all this access online. Well Some of the barriers have to come down for cross border shipping. But still, the technology is moving forward that opportunity to buy all of these wine regions coming online producing different things, different choices, which is the beauty of wine and its diversity. So I wanted to kind of wrap up with some quick questions, because this has just been marvellous, what’s the best wine advice you’ve ever been given that you might share with others? You know,
Jill Barth 34:25
I just learned something cool. This past year. Even as a wine writer, I never really thought I had access to auctions and I’ve covered auctions a little bit more. And just maybe if you’re interested in procuring some different wines, Google some of the auction houses and some of them have stores for online bidding. So you could like get maybe a bottle or two here or there and set your bid and it’s way more affordable than I thought it would be. So if you’re somebody that’s kind of looking for something a little bit that you think is out of your price range, you could try out these online auctions and find you know, a reputable one. One that has a long history many of them do. And I thought that was really cool because I just never thought I would be able to find that auctions and I learned a lot about that this year. So, fighter tip that you might be able to try and see what you
Natalie MacLean 35:13
do you have a favourite wine gadget. There’s a lot of them out there and not sure if you have a favourite one.
Jill Barth 35:18
Oh, gosh, you know, I don’t use a lot of gadgets. I kind of just use the old wine key. I’m actually afraid of some different gadgets to cancer, I think a little bit of air for a lot of wines makes a big difference. Yeah. And if you could share wine with anyone living or dead,
Natalie MacLean 35:33
who might that be? And which one if you have a specific one in mind,
Jill Barth 35:38
you know what, and this kind of goes out a little bit to my husband and he and I watch Jacques Pepin constantly. And if you watch up the pen, he always ends. Everything was like, You should drink this with your friend. Make this food and wine for your friends. So I would love to have a glass of wine. Chuck the pen, maybe he’ll be listening. That would be great.
Natalie MacLean 35:58
All right. Well, you’ve made Your website, Gil bharath.wordpress.com or.org. It’s Calm, calm. Great. And I’m sure we can find your columns on Forbes, USA Today in the various places you write about. Is there anything that we haven’t covered that you wanted to mention?
Jill Barth 36:15
Gosh, you look, I took a few notes. No, I don’t think so. I’m excited that people are so excited for Rosé. The one thing I think is interesting is to maybe consider trying the Rosés for around the world. I mean, I know about Provence, almost exclusively, but there are some really cool varieties being grown to make Rosé all around. And that’s kind of one of the things I’m hoping to taste more of everything that’s out there.
Natalie MacLean 36:38
That’s exciting thing. There’s so much more to do, which is fantastic. So, Jill, this has been wonderful. I threw away half the questions. We just didn’t even get on to them. But you’ve been a marvellous source of inspiration and insight into the world of Rosé and a lot of wine. So, thank you for that. I hope you’ll come back on the show in the future.
Jill Barth 36:56
By Natalie. Thank you. Okay. Bye bye, Joe.
Natalie MacLean 37:04
Well, there you have it. I hope you enjoyed this chat with Jill Barth. Here are my takeaways. Number one, I love how Jill describes the Rosé lifestyle, both ancient and new and on both sides of the Atlantic, including Hamptons Gatorade, gotta love that. Number two, she provides great regional context for us in terms of the major French Appalachians producing Rosé a side note an Appalachian is a legally defined and protected geographical region, a designation for that region that indicates where the grapes were grown for that particular wine, and often how they’re grown with laws governing irrigation, the types of grapes and so on. So 90% of wine with an appellation designation in Provence, is Rosé and 100% of it is dry. The two Val region in the Rhone Valley only makes Rosé for its Apple ated wines. These two tips alone will help you better understand the style of Roséries from those regions that you’re buying, even if you haven’t tried them before. Number three, we chat about the craze over the palest Rosé and that it doesn’t necessarily mean the best or lightest Rosé, though it has that perception. Similarly, darker hued Rosés are not necessarily sweet or more full bodied. Personally though I love the dark dry Rosés of 10,000 those are my favourites. Number four, the spectrum of colour for Rosé is unlike any other type of wine from a pale peach almost I’d say even Clearwater sometimes to the darker hues of cranberry with more romantic descriptors in between such as ballet slipper onionskin. And I have the Partridge or I’m going to flubber this but let’s give it a try. We’ll dependably how’s that and number five we chat about the commercial success of whispering angel in new About the glitter factor behind their branding and yet, they are still very much well made wines. And finally, number six Gil talks about more general wine trends in 2019, which remain just as relevant today, including the rise in popularity of older regions with new styles, including Greece, Portugal and Germany, as well as wine categories, such as cru Beaujolais Lambrusco and sparkling reds made from Shiraz. And tonight, they’re also experiencing a lot of growth. If you liked this episode, please tell a friend about it, especially one who’s interested in fascinating wine tips about Rosé and current trends that Jill shared. If you’re looking for links for Jill’s website, her books, the wines, we tasted a full transcript to our conversation, the video version of this chat, and where you can find us on Facebook Live every second Wednesday at 7pm Eastern. That’s all in the show. notes at Natalie MacLean comm forward slash 80 Finally, if you want to connect with me personally join me in a free online video class at Natalie MacLean comm forward slash class. You won’t want to miss next week when I’ll be chatting with Emily Pierce Bona, who is named Ontario’s best Somali in a gruelling day long competition. We go behind the scenes with Emily to chat about what it’s like to compete and win in this competition hosted by the Canadian Association of Professional Somalis. Plus, she shares her expert tips on tasting and enjoying wine, including how to choose a great bottle from a restaurant list with the help of your simile Of course, thank you for taking the time to join me here. I hope something great is in your glass this week. Perhaps a lovely Rosé.
Natalie MacLean 40:58
You don’t want to miss one. Juicy episode of this podcast, especially the secret full body bonus episodes that I don’t announce on social media. So subscribe for free now at Natalie MacLean comm forward slash subscribe, maybe here next week Cheers.