Arnot-Roberts California Rosé Touriga Nacional 2019 $30
Though made on Long Island, the Wölffer represents the classic pale-pink style that earned the gossip-page moniker Hamptons Water, which later inspired the Hampton Water, started by the pop star Jon Bon Jovi and his son Jesse Bongiovi. It’s amusing — to me, at least — that the Wölffer is actually produced in the Hamptons. It is made largely of merlot, with a substantial amount of chardonnay and a few other grapes as part of a blend.
Though pale rosé has come to be thought of as ideal, some of the best rosés are much darker in color, like the Tiberio Cerasuolo d’Abruzzo, made entirely of montepulciano d’Abruzzo. Cerasuolo means cherry-red, so you can imagine what it looks like.
The third rosé comes from Arnot-Roberts, one of the best of the new wave of California producers, which is actually not so new anymore. The wine is made from port grapes, mostly touriga nacional with some tinta cão, grown in Lake County, Calif. It’s on the paler end, closer to the Wölffer than to the Tiberio.
If you have difficulty finding any of these, try to select instead something akin to what you’re after: a pale New York or Provençal rosé for the Wölffer, a dark southern Italian bottle for the Tiberio and a pale California alternative for the Arnot-Roberts.
Drink cool rather than icy cold, and above all, don’t sweat it. Let’s let rosé do its job and cheer us up.