California is known for its diversity, and one of the aspects of this diversity is the many rosés California produces. There are some fantastic rosés in the golden state, and this article should give you a place to start exploring some of the best of them.

Choosing a California rosé is a tough call, but we break down the top 10 California rosé wines for you based on price, taste, and overall value.

Summer is in full swing, and what better way to beat the heat than with a cool glass of rosé?

Provence may be considered the spiritual cradle of rosé wines, but California rivals the southern French region in offering a wide range of quality samples. So the next time you’re in the mood for a little refreshment, turn to California for a rose.

Caraccioli 2020 Escolle Vineyard Rosé of Pinot Noir (Santa Lucia Highlands); $25, 94 points. This variety begins with crystal clear aromas of strawberry, pink lemonade and rose petals in a fresh, clean and delicious nose. There’s a fantastic crackle in the throat, and a chalky feel frames the flavors of strawberry, plum, and rose petals. -Matt Kettleman

Hartford Court 2020 Rosé de Pinot Noir (Russian River Valley); $30, 94 points. Made primarily from grapes grown in their own Fog Dance Vineyard, this is an unforgettable, delicious and bright wine with delicate notes of tangerine, peach and strawberry. Fermented in stainless steel, it remains crisp on the palate with a hint of orange richness on the finish. Editor’s Choice. -Virgini Boone

A Tribute to Grace 2020 Santa Barbara Highlands Vineyard Rosé of Grenache (Santa Barbara County); $25, 93 points. Very pale pink in the glass, this variety begins with aromas of rose petals, honeydew and wet slate. The taste is very intense and sticky, like licking rocks and shells, with hovering aromas of red apple and rose petals in the finish. -M.K.

Red Car 2020 Pinot Noir Rosé (Sonoma Coast); $28, 93 points. Crisp red fruits dominate this beautiful wine that offers great depth of flavor and nuance. The properties of mandarin and blood orange provide freshness and appeal. -V.B.


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Joel God 2020 Rose (Central Coast); $16, 91 points. For a generally available rosé wine, this is a solid affair, starting with aromas of pure rubber, strawberry, razor ice and chalk. There is a firm tension when swallowing: The ripe watermelon and strawberry will appeal to the masses, while the chalky texture will delight connoisseurs. Editor’s Choice. -M.K.

Joseph Jewell 2020 Slusser Vineyard Rosé of Pinot Noir (Russian River Valley); $24, 91 points. Fruity, with waves of raspberry, strawberry and watermelon, this light and crisp wine has a bright flavor and texture. Notes of dried herbs and lemongrass add nuance and delicious flavor. -V.B.

McKahn 2020 Grenache Rosé (Shenandoah Valley); $26, 91 points. A pale pink colour, seductive aromas of ruby grapefruit and a light, fresh and crisp taste give this light wine charm and finesse. The raspberry and mint notes are surprisingly concentrated and long lasting. Editor’s Choice. -Jim Gordon

Dancing Crow 2020 Syrah Rosé (Lake County); $20, 90 points. It is an attractive, well-balanced wine with a light salmon color, fresh aromas of raspberry and peach, and a nice ripe but tart taste on the palate. -J.G.

We recommend it:

Lids for covered/open wine cabinets (set of 4)

Wine mugs for indoors and outdoors (set of 4)

LangeTwins 2020 River Ranch Vineyard Aglianico Rosé (Jahant); $22, 90 points. Generous fruit flavors and a polished texture are complemented by lively, underlying acidity in this aromatic, balanced and harmonious wine from the Italian grape. -J.G.

Noble Vines 2020 515 Rosé (Central Coast); $12, 90 points. The nose of this drink has a lively combination of gum and cotton candy, but a touch of white ash gives it a more serious note. The throat reveals aromas of orange blossom and ripe nectarines framed by a stony, chalky texture. Best buy. -M.K.

Published on 30. June 2021

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