A French journalist once described Mas Champart as “discreet excellence,” and I couldn’t agree more. Long before it became a trend (a trend, by the way, that I support wholeheartedly!), Mas Champart was doing what we love most in a rosé: fermenting with native yeasts, using little to no sulfur in the winemaking, and allowing the malolactic fermentation to occur. If all you need is a cold rosé for ice cubes and the beach, none of the above steps are really that important. But if you like your rosé to be real, to show a sense of place, and to drink like a wine instead of a beverage, these steps are essential. This rosé is intensely aromatic, round yet airy, with a strong southern French identity. For those of you who are familiar with this rosé from past vintages, be prepared for a nice surprise this year. There’s more Mourvèdre in the mix, from more serious terroir (usually reserved for their rouge), which makes this about as serious and real a rosé as you can get. It might be the only year this happens, so enjoy while you can.
I hate to play favorites, but sometimes you just have to face facts. There is rosé, lots of rosé, great rosés, even...and then there is Bandol rosé. It’s like talking about Chardonnay compared to Meursault. Terrebrune is the only domaine I know of that I can recommend, for those who can do so correctly, to lay the wine down for twenty years. Yes, aged Terrebrune rosé is a beautiful thing. And young—well, just open the bottle and you’ll see right away what sets this so far apart from anything else of similar color.