Mirabeau Rosé Classic (www.mirabeauwine.com) is much more than what the Daily Mail in the U.K. calls “heart-achingly beautiful.” The wine is a dream come true for owner Stephen Cronk and his family. Available for the first time in the U.S. in two blends—Mirabeau “Classic” Rosé 2013 and its ultra-pale, ultra-elegant big sister Pure Mirabeau Rosé—Stephen’s wines are refreshing aperitifs and pair perfectly with a variety of summer dishes for easy entertaining.
Now more than ever, Americans are making summer the season for rosé (look no further than the Yes Way Rosé meme taking Instagram by storm). The U.S. has experienced double-digit growth inretail sales of premium imported rosé wines for every year of the past decade, and exports of Provençal rosé to the US jumped 40% in 2013. No longer a bi-product of winemakers looking to make more concentrated red wines, Provençal rosés are created today with both intention and spirit—and Brad and Angelina aren’t the only ones in on the action.
Mirabeau Wine began in the summer of 2009 when Stephen quit his job to pursue his dream of crafting beautiful wines. He moved his family from London to a small town called Cotignac in the heart of Provence, France and set about to create rosés that would be enjoyed around the world. Just five years later, Mirabeau is sold in ten countries and has won international acclaim from some of the toughest critics.
Not a winemaker himself, Stephen’s first order of business was to put together a world-class team. Bucking the tradition in the region (as only an expat Brit could), Stephen tapped a Master of Wine who was trained in the Barossa Valley in Australia and began scouring the region for the very bestgrapes. His game plan was simple: work with only the very best vineyards in the region, combine old world knowledge with new world winemaking, and never compromise on quality.
The Pure Mirabeau Rosé ($21.99) is the newest wine from Mirabeau. This blend of classic Grenache, Syrah, and Vermentino uses grapes from the highest altitudes in the Côtes de Provence, taking advantage of optimal, cool growing temperatures. The result is plenty of fruity notes including grapefruit and white peach mingled withfloral hints of rose and orange blossom—ending with a long, green herby finish. Paler in hue than Classic, Pure is a refreshing before-meal aperitif—perhaps before lunch by the pool—and also pairs well with everything from salads in vinaigrettes to poached fish and sharp cheeses. Pure was a recentfavorite of Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate with a score of 90 points.
Regarded as the more gastronomic of Stephen’s wines, the Mirabeau “Classic” Rosé 2013 ($15.99) is also an AOC Cotes de Provence blend of Grenache, Syrah and Cinsault, with a deeper salmon pink hue. Its more intense red fruit flavor of raspberry, strawberry, and redcurrant give Classic a robust mouth feel that pairs perfectly with nearly any meal, from Mediterranean to Asian, grilled fish to heavy roasted meat. Its creamy texture and strong presence earned an impressive 89 points from Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate.
With his winemaking underway, Stephen decided to innovate in marketing, too. He took his message directly to the people on social media and hit gold with a viral video of himself opening wine with a shoe, amounting to more than 6 million views on YouTube (www.youtube.com/watch?v=u1wROm-OF9w). Mirabeau also enjoys a direct connection with its consumers online: in addition to wacky wine-opening tricks, Stephen shares recipes, photos and recounts the ups and downs of their great adventure in Provence. Follow them @mirabeauwine and on Facebook (www.facebook.com/mirabeauwine).