The French do all sorts of things that leave us in awe: consume a half wheel of Camembert a day and still remain svelte, smoke a pack of cigarettes a day and not die, make berets look fashionable. Drink wine for breakfast and never seem drunk.
It seems like the kids of the southern French seaside have had a longstanding secret: mix rose with a bit of light-tasting juice plus a little simple syrup and sip all day while frolicking at the beach, being French and great-looking and smart all at the same time.
If you’ve ever attempted to drink wine all day in the sun, then you know the perils of it. Seemed like a good idea at the time, right? But with this— and I’ve tasted it so I can vouch— you can do just that and wake up feeling great.
And here’s the most important part: It tastes really, really good.
Most “wine blends” marketed at women seem to lean heavily on sugar, but if you’re the kind of bone-dry wine drinker that I am, you want no part of wine coolers or even Riesling, which tends to be lower in alcohol but very sweet.
Pamplemousse, as this magical elixir is called, means grapefruit in French and is being imported to the Twin Cities right now. The label is one of the first of its kind in the states, and definitely in Minnesota, the importer tells me.
As the story goes, a daughter asked her dad, who owned a huge French rosé cooperative, why he wasn’t bottling the secret that she and her friends had known about for years.
“Well, I guess I’d better,” said the good dad of the lucky young lady.
And so, a blend of high-quality French rosé, grapefruit juice, and peach oil was born. The result on the palate is delicious rosé at the front, bitter grapefruit at the back, and lightly sweet peach to round things out.
At 8.5 percent alcohol, you could drink it all day, or have one or two of these every night without getting a hangover. If you’re already drinking shandies or white wine spritzers or even Arnie Palmers, then the blending for the sake of drinking all day thing makes perfect sense. A bunch of local bartenders are going to start tinkering with it, too.
Pamplemousse is currently in the process of being distributed to a limited number of stores and bars right now, but look for it currently at HyVee and North Loop Wine and Spirits.
Also, ask a few of your favorite bartenders about it, including those at Revival, Heirloom, Lyn65, Station Pizzeria in Minnetonka, Xavi, and Grumpy's Northeast.
Pamplemousse retails between $9.99 and $12.99.
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