Brut Detroit's Valentine's Day Wino Guide

February 1, 2017


We are, hopefully, about half way through winter. A small beacon of warmth appears every February 14th. Valentine’s Day.  A day of love, actual or hoped. A day of celebration, big or small. A day of special gifts, cards, meals and wine. 


We will let you handle the gifts, cards, and meals... but we can help with the wine selection!


Valentine’s Day brings wine lovers special opportunities to share with their loved ones:


1. Pink.  If ever there was a day for Pink, it is Valentine’s Day. And rosé is the perfect pairing...  


A great wine for food.  A great wine as an aperitif, seek out some rosé wine this year.  There are different styles of course – rosé from Provence is the most revered of the pink wines because of their delicate classic flavors arising out of the south of France.


There are also other fantastic options for your palates – try a Sangiovese based rosé from Italy; a Grenache based rosé from Languedoc; a Cabernet Franc based rosé from the Loire Valley; or a Spanish rosé from Tempranillo. 


A note about vintage – you probably will not find any rosés from 2016 – they have been bottled and are most likely due to arrive on March or April.  Look for rosés from 2015 (a wonderful vintage) and nothing older than that.  Rosé wine is, for the most part, not meant to age, so one year of age is plenty!



2. Bubbles!  Every celebration deserves bubbles and Valentine’s Day is no exception! 


For the dryer, toasty classic styles, look for Champagne.  If you're looking for a budget friendly option instead of a bottle of Champagne, look to Cava from Spain, Prosecco from Italy, Cremant from everywhere in France but Champagne, Franciacorta from Italy, or a wine called Gruet from New Mexico. Yes, New Mexico – trust us.  And, to double down on all I have talked about so far – go for a rosé bubbly!  They are fruity, fantastic and pink!


For those of us in and around Michigan, Brut Detroit highly recommends any bubbles from Michigan’s own Larry Mawby.  Larry’s bubbles come under two labels L Mawby and M Lawrence.  L Mawby are bubbles made in the ‘methode champenoise’ and M Lawrence are made in the tank method.  Depending on your own personal relationship status with your significant other – we specifically recommend Sex from the M Lawrence label – a wonderful, fun, slightly sweet pink bubbly from Michigan...



3. Saint-Amour Cru Beaujolais  -- It may be cliché, but how can we not think of Saint-Amour as the most romantic of the Beaujolais crus?


This light, easy-drinking cru is characterized by soft red fruit. Beaujolais is made from the Gamay grape and comes from the most southern part of the Burgundy region in France.  There are 10 “cru” Beaujolais sub regions, representing the best of the area.  These are not the “Nouveau” style wines.  These are light bodied wines with light tannins and smooth acidity and are a true gem for food, on Valentine’s Day or at any other time of the year.



4. Bandol --  Bandol is a small region in southern France that touches the Mediterranean.


The region focuses on  the Mouvedre grape variety with its opaque purple-black color and intense black fruit flavors. For fans of big red wines for their steak dinners on Valentine’s Day, this is one to seek out.  With flavors of black pepper, deep plum, black cherry, blackberry, sage and smoked chocolate, this is your big bold option for this mid-winter holiday meal.  A note about Bandol though – it's a BIG red wine.  Look for one with some age on it so it has softened.  A 10 year-old Bandol is wonderful yet still “young”.  One of the best and accessible Bandol producers is Domaine Tempier.








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