Where in the world do you find a highly rated Provence rose for under $5? And how does it taste?
In honor of Women's History Month, the French Winophiles celebrate women in the French wine industry. While I had wanted to write about a Champagne from Nathalie Falmet, a winemaker focuses on sustainable growing practices, the bottle I saw for sale was $75.
In conttrast, I passed by the rose section at Grocery Outlet and noticed a Mathilde Chapoutier rose for just $3.99. I thought it might be some kind of mistake but well worth a try!
Grocery Outlet is a West Coast grocery store chain that buys surplus food products (often overstock or soon to expire) and sells them at discounted prices. According to an analysis from Engage3, Grocery Outlet does not have advertising fees that add to the cost of the wine, and restaurateurs are also known to snag deals from here for their patrons.
The Mathilde Chapoutier Grand Ferrage Provence Rose normally costs $20, and the 2017 vintage is currently for sale at Total Wine for $19.97. The 2018 vintage is also an Editor's Choice at Wine Enthusiast, which further added to the puzzle of how this wine ended up at Grocery Outlet for $3.99.
Upon tasting a bottle, the wine wasn't corked, and it tasted just like the review from Jeb Dunnick with "strawberry, white cherry, and salty mineral aromas." Most pronounced for me was the structure and fullness of the wine. It did not dissipate away quickly and seemed like it would hold up to many kinds of foods from fish to cheese to heavier tomato based dishes and pork.
What was unusual was its color. Rather than a very lightly hued pink typical of Provence roses, this Mathilde Chapoutier rose was much darker, like light salmon and freshly pressed peach juice with skin contact.
I don't know why this wine ended up at Grocery Outlet for just $4 other than the distributor had surplus wines from the vintage to offload? Or the orangey hue is not how it was intended to be?
In any case, it was nice to be the beneficiary of this deal, which may or may not be at Grocery Outlet again.
2018 Mathilde Chapoutier Grand Ferrage Rose
Cotes de Provence AOC; A blend of Grenache, Cinsault, Syrah, Rolle; 12.5% ABV; $3.99 at Grocery Outlet
Short, cold maceration on the skin before direct pressing; aged 5 months in stainless steel vats before bottling
Mathilde Chapoutier is an 8th generation winemaker and the daughter of Michel Chapoutier, the famed French winemaker responsible for over forty 100 point rated wines and also converted his vineyards to organic and biodynamic farming.
As a well traveled millenial, including living in Beijing and speaking Mandarin, Mathilde used her knowledge of wine to create a high quality rose from one of the most famed regions for rose, Cotes de Provence. Her love of travel is represented by the compass emblem on the wine label.
Per the winery's website, humility is at the heart of her winemaking ethos. "Nature always has the final say," and she "observes, decides and guides nature in the most respectful way possible."
Per the tech sheet, the color of the wine is "clear, pale pink with purple highlights." However, the wine I bought from Grocery Outlet, was definitely not pale pink and had no signs of purple streaks anywhere. Perhaps this wine was a bad batch and ended up on the bargain basement shelf?
Since I thought this wine would pair with anything, I tried them with a couple of plant based tacos from Tacos Don Pepe.
- Jamaica & Hibiscus flowers (dried and reconstituted) - tomatilla salsa, onions, cilantro
- Acorn & Honey - roasted sesame seed salsa, corn, shitake mushroom
How did it pair? I liked the rose with the acidity in the tomatillo and sesame seed salsas. But to be very honest, my mind was stuck on the flavor of the wine and whether the $3.99 price was the way it was "supposed" to taste and look.
I suppose I'll just have to pay "regular" price next time to taste and see the difference.
France's Women in Wine
Celebrate Women's History Month, and learn more about women in the French wine world from the French Winophiles:
- Wendy of A Day in the Life on the Farm is sipping Domaine de Marcoux Lirac La Lorentine to Celebrate Women's History Month.
- Jeff of Food Wine Click! invites us to Celebrate French Women in Wine: Anne-Sophie Dubois
- Jane of Always Ravenous talks about Women Behind the Wine: Domaine Weinbach, Catherine Faller.
- Martin of ENOFYLZ Wine Blog is sharing Champagne Louise Brison: A Tradition of Women in Charge.
- Robin of Crushed Grape Chronicles opened Delphine Vesselle and Domaine Jean Vesselle Rosé de Saignée, Brut from Bouzy.
- Linda of My Full Wine Glass found Château Larrivet Haut-Brion: A place for women in traditional Bordeaux.
- Nicole of Somm’s Table shares Cotillon Rouge and Rilletes.
- Susannah of Avvinare introduces Arnelle Cruse, A Look at the Cru Bourgeois.
- Camilla of Culinary Adventures with Camilla is sharing A Medieval French Peasant Dish and French Winemaker Sisters.
- Terri of Our Good Life writes Here's to France's Women in Wine and to Rebecca Rosenberg's
Book Champagne Widow.
- Gwendolyn of Wine Predator paired Champalou Fille’s 2020 Vouvray with French Favorites.