Tuscany, Italy, $9.00 per glass
One recent evening, I headed for Il Buco in NoHo to have a glass of rosé from the famed Chianti Classico producer Castello di Ama. My former boss at Sherry-Lehmann tapped me into this wine, and it really is a stellar rosato in a class of its own. On an earlier visit when I spotted it on the wine list by the glass (it’s already hard enough to find by the bottle, let alone by the glass) at Il Buco I knew I was set for the summer. The evening I dropped by, Roberto, the general manager and the creator of the wine list, happened to be sitting next to me at the bar having a racy steak tartare with an eye-catching dose of jalapeños! My night of just-one-drink-to-wind-down turned into a serendipitous soirée of rosé tasting and excited wine exchanges.
In her short paragraph on rosés from Italy, the Castello di Ama was the only rosé Robinson explicitly cited as being “especially delicious”. My personal penchant for this predominately Sangiovese-based (90% Sangiovese blended with 10% Canaiolo) wine comes from its beautiful structure and balance. It has a bit of weight to it, which makes it a perfect wine to have with a meal. I especially crave this rosé due to its limited production and circulation, but also because of its exceptional quality as a serious wine with aging potential rather than the mere common virtue of being a sipping wine.