Tomorrow is the first day of summer, an invitation to relax in the shade on a porch or under a tree. And for me, that means it’s time to stock and sip pink wine. Lev and I were introduced to vin de Provence in Aix about 10 years ago. The cafe owner, apologetic that we had to wait for a table, offered us glasses of chilled pink wine. A really nice gesture, we agreed, gingerly tasting the wine, expecting something like the cheap, sweet, California white zinfandel or–worse–Lancer’s from Portugal, in a clay bottle, popular 50 years ago. Instead, we discovered a uniquely crisp, young, light, fruity, bone-dry wine traditionally served all summer in southern France and along the coast of Italy.
After Lev died, I decided that (a) I would not stock a bar but (b) I would drink and serve very good wine in thin, long-stemmed goblets. I put away the Waterford, bought Riedel wine glasses and a small wine refrigerator and ordered a case each of Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon from Cakebread Cellars, my favorite Napa Valley winery. In 2013 Cakebread announced limited production of a pink Provence-style wine, which they named vin de porche–wine of the porch. Remembering Aix, I ordered a case. I was delighted. Last year I hesitated and it was gone.
In Nantucket last August, pink wine was the rage–multiple French labels in every restaurant. It’s been slow getting to Texas, though; and my local wine merchant only has a couple of brands, none wonderful. When the email came from Cakebread last month, I ordered immediately. I am ready for summer.
Photo: An old French stone fountain, purchased at an architectural salvage yard in Houdan, on my west terrace.