Six of the best ‘designer’ rosés
Château Minuty 281 Côtes de Provence Rosé
Keen to move the Provence rosé category into the prestige Champagne sphere, François Matton, co-owner and managing director of Château Minuty in Côtes de Provence, developed a top rosé made predominantly from 25-year-old Grenache using a clone unique to the estate.
“I wanted a luxury bottle to go with it so I approached perfume bottle designer Hubert de Malherbes, who is best known for creating Dior’s J’adore perfume bottle. I think there are a lot of similarities between perfume and rosé,” Matton told db.
“The blue used on the bottle is inspired by the deep blue hue the sky turns when the Mistral wind blows through Provence. It’s a really specific shade. We called the wine 281 after the Pantone number of the royal blue colour that drips down the side of the bottle. It looks like wax but it’s not.
“I wanted the bottle to stand out from a distance. Rosé is usually drunk from an ice bucket, so it was important to make sure the neck of the bottle made a visual impact,” he added. The pale pink rosé is “intense and complex” with notes of peach and melon accentuated by a mineral finish.
Château Sainte Roseline Christian Lacroix Lampe de Meduse 2019 rosé
This summer, Provence producer Château Sainte Roseline released a limited edition bottle of its flagship Lampe de Meduse 2019 rosé with an intricate lace-like label created by French haute couture maesro Christian Lacroix in celebration of its 70th anniversary.
The hourglass shape of the bottle reminded Lacroix of a woman’s body. With the design he wanted to pay tribute to the history of the cuvée.
“In order to symbolise this femininity in our history, Lacroix wanted to use the imagery of white lace; an attractive material for women’s clothes. The white colour reflects the purity of Sainte Roseline, which echoes the purity of our wines,” the estate’s export director, Patrick Pouvatchy, told db.
“The lace also highlights the precision work in the vineyard; work of delicacy and finesse, which echoes the meticulous and artisanal handcrafted work of our winemakers, who fashion our wines from the cut bunches of grapes as the haute-couture master would cut cloth,” he added.
The pale pink, lees aged Côtes de Provence rosé is made from a blend of Grenache, Cinsault, Mourvèdre and Tibouren. According to its makers, the “lively and complex” wine offers aromas of peach and mango and a refreshing finish.
Handpicked Wines Romance Was Born Yarra Valley Rosé 2017
In 2017 Australian estate Handpicked Wines, which owns six vineyards in Mornington Peninsula, the Yarra Valley, Barossa Valley and Tasmania, collaborated with Aussie fashion brand Romance Was Born on a limited edition label for its Yarra Valley rosé.
Spearheaded by Romance Was Born designers Anna Plunkett and Luke Sales, the label features a design by Australian artist Del Kathryn Barton. “Handpicked Wines shares our philosophy of quality curation, creative pairings, and at the core, a playful freedom. We are proud to contribute a special label we designed with our dear friend Del Kathryn Barton, and to leave the winemaking to the experts,” Plunkett and Sales said.
Made from a blend of whole bunch pressed Pinot Noir and Marsanne, the “textured” salmon pink is “delicately savoury with berry and spice aromas”. The collaboration proved so fruitful that Hanpicked released a second limited edition Romance Was Born rosé in 2018 with new artwork.
Donnafugata Dolce & Gabbana Rosa 2019
With rosé sales surging during lockdown, Italian fashion house Dolce & Gabbana recently joined the party, designing the label for Donnafugata Dolce & Gabbana Rosa 2019, a Provençal-style pale pink made in collaboration with Sicilian estate Donnafugata.
Created from a blend of Nerello Mascalese and Nocera grapes grown on the northern slopes of Mount Etna and on the hills of Contessa Entellina, near Palermo, the thirst quenching pink offers notes of jasmine, wild strawberry, peach and bergamot, with the Nerello Mascalese adding a mineral component and the Nocera bringing red and stone fruit to the blend.
The bottle’s geometrically patterned blue, red, white and pink label, designed by Dolce & Gabbana, is inspired by the ornate detailing of traditional carts native to Sicily. “We are Italian, we love to eat and drink a good wine, like Rosa. For us it is like tasting the smells of our land, seeing it’s colours and feeling its atmosphere,” the fashion design duo said.
This isn’t the first time the designers have moved their brand beyond clothing. They have put their hands to everything from pasta tins for Pastificio di Martino to juicers, toasters and kettles in a lucrative collaboration with Smeg.
VieVité Zac Posen Côtes de Provence Rosé 2017
In 2018 American fashion designer Zac Posen collaborated with Domaine Sainte-Marie on a limited edition bottle design for its VieVité rosé. Taking inspiration from the trend for tropicana, Posen’s screen-printed leaf motif wraps around the bottle, which is accented with rose gold.
The arching palms are millennial pink, trendy teal, voted the world’s favourite colour in 2017, and the designer’s signature shade – ‘midnight palm’ green. The bottle’s skyscraper shape is inspired by the Art Deco Chrysler Building in New York, where Posen grew up.
The rosé was produced at organic winey Domaine Sainte-Marie in Côtes de Provence from old vine Grenache, Cinsault, Syrah and Carignan. “We have always considered VieVité not just a rosé, but a fashion brand in its own right. VieVité is all about having an experience. Zac’s designs complete this VieVité experience,” said Domaine Sainte-Marie’s head winemaker, Christopher Duburcq.
“The parallels between my company and VieVité Rosé make this partnership effortless. We both hold quality in the highest regard, and work tirelessly to create products that give our clients a glamorous and elevated experience,” Posen added. He launched his eponymous collection in 2001 with a vision for modern American glamour that married couture techniques with striking innovation.
Soho House Daimen Hirst Lady A rosé 2019
Hoping to capitalise on the global thirst for rosé, the Soho House group recently launched a Provence pink with a butterfly motif designed by Damien Hirst. A blend of Grenache and Cinsault, Lady A rosé is made at Château La Coste in Le Puy-Sainte-Réparade, north of Aix-en-Provence.
The 124-hectare, biodynamically farmed estate is owned by Irish property magnate and prominent art collector Patrick McKillen, and features works by Louise Bourgeois, Andy Goldsworthy, Richard Serra and Ai Wei Wei.
Soho House founder Nick Jones created the wine to mark the 40th birthday of Ontario-born Markus Anderson, the group’s global membership director. Making the most of his high profile connections, Jones asked provocative British artist Damien Hirst to design the butterfly motif that appears on the screen-printed bottle. “The design depicts a ‘social butterfly’, which is very fitting for a man who spends so much of his time traveling around the world,” Jones said.
Produced at Château La Coste’s cylindrical, hangar-like winery crafted from aluminium by French architect Jean Nouvel, the IGP Méditerranée is fermented in stainless steel. According to Soho House’s master Sommelier, Vincent Gasnier, the “delicate and elegant” pale pink is crisp and zesty, with aromas of pink grapefruit, peach, and raspberry, and a long and refreshing finish.