If there’s one thing that’s considered to be taboo in the wine world, it’s drinking wine with ice. It’s an act that’s seen as disrespectful to the flavor of the wine. For most wines, adding ice can make it harder to fully experience the gentle aromas that come from the fermentation process. Ice dilutes them, and then also throws off the color.
Serving wine, traditionally, involves strict adherence to temperature guidelines and chilling methods. But really, who has time for that? What about people (like myself) who can appreciate the wonderful feeling of sipping wine by the pool, complete with some ice to keep their drinks cold on hot summer days?
Thanks to one company, the old rule of “no ice in wine” might have gone out the window. It’s Rosé Piscine, and it’s going to change the way you do summer. How do I know? Well, I decided to have a splash with it, myself.
Rosé Piscine was introduced to me by a friend who worked with Wine Week.
A good rule of thumb I use is to always listen to people who work in an industry when it comes to brand suggestions. If a “wine person” mentions a specific type of wine as high quality, you better believe I’ll try it. After researching it, I discovered that it was a truly unique type of blush wine worth checking out.
It’s a rosé’s rosé.
Rosé Piscine isn’t just a cute blush wine in an Instagram-worthy bottle. It’s a legit Old World wine that’s made in Southern France, using mostly Negrette grapes with just a pinch of Muscat de Hamburg. The wine’s combination, plus the way that it’s fermented, is designed to be more robust than a typical rosé would be.
This wine was actually inspired by a trip that Vinovalie’s Jaques Trainier took. While he was going to Saint-Tropez, he noticed that waiters at the beach would serve cognac glasses of rosé wine over ice to bathers. They would simply call it, “une piscine de rosé,” which translates into “a swimming pool of rosé.”
Inspired by what he saw, he designed Rosé Piscine—a wine that improves when ice is added to it. Because of its unique makeup and strong aromatic presence, it’s what I’d call a “rosé’s rosé.”
I tried the wine.
I’ll admit that I was a little bit skeptical about the idea of putting ice in wine, even when the wine is specially designed to be served that way. I’m old school like that. So, my first try of Rosé Piscine was done the old fashioned way: chilled in my freezer for around 10 minutes with a wet paper towel wrapped around it. I added some berries for “ice” and poured myself a nice, cold glass.
The wine itself has a beautiful light salmon, almost peachy color. That alone made me fall in love with the drink. I mean, who doesn’t like drinking a wine that looks so good? My first sip was just as satisfying—tart, crisp, and filled with notes of both berries and flowers.
I tried the wine again, and this time, added ice.
Admittedly, I had to be eased into the idea of adding ice to wine. After all my years as a food and wine critic in the United States, the thought of adding ice to wine seemed a bit unfathomable. I had to actually take a sip before, just to see if the Southern French tradition of iced wine will click.
Feeling a bit more confident in the wine’s flavor, I added some ice in a glass and poured myself a second drink. My first sip nailed it, and made me a believer. With a little bit of ice, everything changed in its flavor. It was so much lighter, so much more flavorful, and best of all, brought out every little note of lychee, raspberry, and lavender I enjoyed so much in my first glass.
My verdict is a positive one.
If you ask any of my friends, I never was a rosé type of person. I was always a red wine drinker, but Rosé Piscine made me rethink that stance. Rosé Piscine is the kind of wine that can work with any dish, be it a steak or a salad. It’s also an amazing summer drink with a beautifully nautical bottle.
It’s really rare to see a wine that undergoes such a deep transformation with just the simple inclusion of ice. That alone makes it a wine worth trying out as a oenophile and as a person who loves to mix up their pairings.
Oh, and if you’re still not a fan of rosé…?
to worry! Vinovalie, which makes Rosé Piscine, has a full variety of different ice-ready wines that you can try. It just so happens that Rosé Piscine is their most popular label, and also was the first of its kind.
As Jacques explained, “Our winery, Vinovalie, located in Southwest France, has already released a few difference “piscine-style” wines, red and sparkling. However, our blockbuster brand continues to be Rosé Piscine, which can be found in every corner of France today and is also the top selling rosé wine in Brazil.: