I like to think of SYWH readers as a sophisticated, tasteful demographic with an appreciation for the finer things in life: epicureans and sensualists who savor every opportunity to sample from life’s rich palette of flavors. But that would be bullshit, because most of you are actually broke 19 year-old college students, which means you probably have a lot more experience with puking up $3 Red Bull & vodkas than shopping for wine. Fortunately, we are here to help– and who better to turn to for a slightly-douchey wine buyers’ guide than our bro Lars Weiss, successful attorney and guitarist for iconic straightedge bands like JUDGE and ALONE IN A CROWD?? – Sgt D
Not to be confused with Champagne Rose (aka “Rozay”) which is the stuff all the rappers are talking about/ naming themselves after. These days there has also been a huge uptick in the popularity of non-sparkling rose as well, albeit with a completely different class of folks. Rose is supposed to be a “fun” summer wine, not to be taken too seriously (as is the case for those in the know with all other wine). It is also supposed to be reasonably priced (a decent bottle should only set you back $12-$17) so it’s great entry-level purchase. Knowing a bit about wine is always a good thing when it comes to girls and besides its summertime! So read on…Rose is a terrific choice from now to at least Labor Day (and these days with global warming- more like mid/ late September).
Domaines Ott- Master Class
I was turned onto The Otter years ago by a very well respected attorney. Total A-level stuff- but almost didn’t make the list because it violates my rule that rose shouldn’t be expensive (about $40/ bottle retail, twice that in a restaurant). Anyhoo- this stuff is strictly St. Bart’s/ Hampton’s south of the highway and really, really good. Cannot believe that it isn’t shouted out more in “urban” music- funny cause I once drank some with NeYo in the studio when I was an engineer. Prolly cause this is the official rose of the illuminati. While on topic- I really think someone should put the Domaines Ott label on a pink/ salmon distressed American Apparel t- shirt. Could be the 2010′s equivalent of the Phillies Blunt shirt. (Sarge-you with me?)
Whispering Angel- First Date
I have a feeling that this was the rose that replaced Domaines Ott in many a beach house the summer after the Lehman collapse. Great way to say you know what’s up but I am prudent with my money (about $20/ bottle retail). Expensive-ish for rose, but not ghetto fab/ rich guy expensive the way Domain Ott is and tres refreshing. It is also the house rose at Ms. Lily’s- Serge Becker’s fancy Jamaican restaurant on Houston St. in NYC. This spot has essentially been my “Cheers” since last summer.
Actual waitstaff at Ms. Lily’s (srsly). If this is what the girls who work there look like, you do the math on the chicks who go there …
Any SYWH bro’s want to hang when they are in town- come through any Tuesday- just dress nicely, have some loot, preferable bring a bish (she’ll be impressed and it’ll make it easier to get in), and tell the doorman you’re there to see Liondub (my younger brother Erik, who has a Tuesday night DJ residency). I’m the dude sitting at the bar next to the DJ set up!
Chateau de la Selve- L’Audacieuse- Netflix/ Kicking it at the crib
Just discovered this stuff this summer. Really tasty, classy, and not too bad on price ($17/ bottle). Would be great to serve when you have your girl over for dinner. Half a bottle with dinner- put on a nice reggae playlist or some Usher- finish the rest on the couch and you should be good to go!
Petit Cochon Bronze- Beach House/ Picnic in the park
Every summer I look for a good, cheap rose that is my fall back for an impromptu dinner party or a lazy sunday in Ft. Greene Park. The “Little Tan Pig” is the Summer 2012 edition. Never mind the cutesy pig label and the pink cork this stuff is totally drinkable especially when served ice cold. Buy a bunch of bottles just to have in the fridge at the summer rental and at $11 a pop you won’t mind so much when uninvited guests drink half a case over a boozy brunch/ afternoon hang.
One note: some of these brands maybe sort of hard to find as a lot of winemaking is done by independent vineyards and sold through independent distributors. If you can’t find it at your local wine shop ask them to pick it up- they should be able to find it- or check Zachys.com. Those who get into wine pride themselves about knowing about good but obscure labels, just like record nerds. Being into wine and building/filling a cellar is sort of the equivalent of HC/ indie rock record collecting just with waaaay more money. Extending the analogy further – Serious wine dudes oftentimes buy allotments of cases directly from the vineyards sometimes even before distributors get the wine -like getting pre release limited edition vinyl directly from label. “Yo! I just got my allotment of Kistler” = “Oh yeah, Judge- “Where It Went- The Complete Discography” on colored vinyl? I have a copy on every color and a test pressing. Jordan sent them to me before it came out.”
White Zinfandel- No, No, Never…
Death before dishonor. Totally avoid this type of rose, regardless of label. Too much can go wrong. Often times will be sweet and will give you nasty hangovers. Totally the wine that guys who became rappers drank before they had money. Complete swill. If this is your only option, keep it real and pick up some beers.
As many situations in life- it is the recommendations on the edges that are often the most valuable. Everyone who can afford it should splurge at least once on Domaines Ott, trust me, it’s worth it. White Zinfandel should be avoided at all costs. However, the wines in the middle are just ones that I’ve stumbled across and liked. Any $12- $17 bottle of rose from Provence (or Spain for that matter) is prob gonna be a good call.
One final tip: For those drunky nights at the summer house when find yourself with half a bottle of chardonnay and the dregs of bottle of merlot- Remember this simple equation: white + red never ever equals rose. Believe me, I’ve tried it…