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Beer and wine


Welcome spring with wines and beers fit for the season.

Greg Horton April 9th, 2014

“Drink pink” is the rallying cry of spring for many wine lovers. The big reds of the fall and winter are retired in favor of lighterbodied wines for warmer weather, and the more patio-friendly the better. While white wines, especially sweeter ones, dominate the spring and summer, many wine lovers still prefer dry, red wines.

Wines at Ludivine
Photo by Mark Hancock

For the committed red wine drinker, rosés are an excellent choice for spring and summer. Rosés have more body and more tannins than most whites but are still light enough to be warm weather-appropriate. Several new rosés are available in the metro this year, including a couple from emerging regions.

Les Rocailles Vin de Savoie Rosé is from a brand-new region and available in Oklahoma. Just across the Alps from Switzerland, the Savoy region has been producing outstanding, eclectic wines for centuries. The Les Rocailles is a rosé of Gamay, the grape that is typically used to produce Beaujolais. The aromatic, floral, intense Les Rocailles is available by the glass at Bin 73 Wine Bar, 7312 N. Western Ave., and Ludivine, 805 N. Hudson Ave.

Also from France, the Premices Rosé from Chateau des Deus Rocs is a delicious blend of Cinsault, Grenache and Syrah. From Languedoc, in southern France, this blend is tangy and fruity but maintains good structure, making it a great choice for food pairing. It’s available by the glass at The Coach House, 6437 Avondale Drive.

Vast, 333 W. Sheridan Ave., and Bin 73 both pour Ermitage du Pic St. Loup Rosé by the glass. This blend of four Rhone grapes is crisp and floral with plenty of berry and orchard fruit flavors. It’s light and refreshing, perfect for patio drinking.

In addition to wine, beer styles tend to change in the spring as well. The new crop is just arriving in the metro, and like the wine, more choices will be arriving in the next month. Broadway Wine Merchants, 824 N. Broadway Ave., has Avery Brewing Company’s Maharaja Imperial IPA, and it’s the first time it has been in the state in four years. Not a hop-bomb, the Maharaja is dry and piney with nice citrus flavor and impeccable balance.

Like Avery, Left Hand Brewing is a Colorado brewery, and its Good Juju ginger is a nice choice for spring weather. The Juju has plenty of ginger on the palate, but it’s also very much a beer with notes of brown sugar, herbs and grass. The finish is particularly herbal and grassy, but in a very pleasant, springlike way.

Louisiana-based Abita Brewing Company uses Louisiana-grown strawberries in its Strawberry Harvest Lager, a wheat beer with traditional wheat beer notes of malt and barley. The finish is slightly sweet, but not in an off-putting way.

 
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