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Forkmedia LLC


by Fred McMillin
for December 7, 2000


It's Time for
The Rosé Bowl

The Coaches

I asked wine teacher Edgar Vogt to handle one team of rosés, the Vogt Varietals.

Teacher-journalist Dave Jones coached the other team, the Pink Panthers.

The Teams

Each team consisted of four pink wines, one inexpensive ($6), one expensive ($16), and two around $12. Thus, there was a new bottle for each quarter. I chose the wines for each team.

Selecting The Winner

The wine ranked over its rival by the largest number of points will be our Wine of the Day. Let's get it on. (I'm tabulating the results of the blind tasting as we go, so I have no idea who will win.)

A Winery with A Fault

"A Winery with A Fault"
When visiting Almaden in the late 1960s I found this plaque indicating we were standing on the San Andreas fault!

First Quarter—$6 Wines
Dave Jones' '99 Beringer White Merlot won the quarter by a field goal, so the Pink Panthers lead by 3.

Second Quarter—$10 Wines
Edgar's '99 Sobon Estate Rhone Rosé (89% Grenache) scored a touchdown with the tasters, putting the Vogt Varietals ahead, 7 to 3.

Third Quarter—$12 Wines
Another lesser-known varietal won the third quarter by 6 points, the '99 Handley Pinot Meunier (a component of much Champagne). That puts the Vogt Varietals ahead 13 to 3. Let's see if the Panthers can stage a fourth-quarter rally.

Fourth Quarter—$16 Wines
Oh-oh. Another important varietal...arguably Italy's greatest grape, the Nebbiolo, that makes the heralded Barolo reds. The Nebbiolo Rosato by Montevina scored another 7 points. The Vogt Varietals stomp the Panthers, 20 to 3.

The Tiebreaker

We have a tie! Both Sierra Foothills wineries, Montevina and Sobon, won by 7 points. To break the tie, we checked with the tasters and if forced to choose, they would take...

Wine of the Day

'99 Montevina Nebbiolo Rosato,
Amador County, Sierra Foothills
Tasters' Comments—More intense strawberry, raspberry flavors than in most off-dry pinks. Nice for the holiday turkey.
Production—Alas, only 900 cases.
Contact—Office of Stan Hock and Sandy Flanders, (707) 963-3104, FX (707) 963-2381
Price—$16 range


About the other wine that tied for first, the Sobon Rhone Rosé made from the Grenache grape. Some five decades ago the Almaden Winery made America's first commercial rosé just south of San Francisco. About 15 years later I visited Almaden, (see photo), to check it out. That first American rosé was made from...Grenache!


About the Writer

Fred McMillin, a veteran wine writer, has taught wine history for 30 years on three continents. In 1995, the Academy of Wine Communications honored Fred with one of only 22 Certificates of Commendation awarded to American wine writers. For information about the wine courses he teaches every month at either San Francisco State University or San Francisco City College (Fort Mason Division), please fax him at (415) 567-4468.



This page created December 2000