What’s the Allure of Wines from Provence? Video with Jill Barth

Our guest this evening is a wine columnist for Forbes and a wine country travel expert for USA TODAY. She’s the founder and author of L’Occasion, an award-winning digital magazine that celebrates the ways we drink, make, and contemplate wine.

She’s also a Provence Wine Master through the Wine Scholar Guild and received a fellowship to the Symposium for Professional Wine Writers.

And she joins me now, live from her home in Chicago: Welcome  Jill Barth!

Watch previous episodes of the Wednesday Wining Show (WWS)  and find out who’s coming up next.



Jill Barth

I’m a writer focused on wine creators – with culture, food, community, ecology, and travel, pivotal to the stories in my contributor column at Forbes digital. I am a Provence Wine Master through the Wine Scholar Guild and received a fellowship to the Symposium for Professional Wine Writers.

I’m the founder and author of L’Occasion, a blog that honors the ways we drink, make, and contemplate wine. L’Occasion was awarded the Best Overall and Best Writing from the prestigious Wine Blog Awards and was a finalist for Millesima’s Blog Awards in food and wine pairing. I’m a wine country travel expert panelist and contributor for USA TODAY’s 10Best. My work has appeared in Decanter, Palate Press, Luxe Provence, Courrier International, Provence WineZine, and Perfectly Provence.

Connect with Jill:






How would you describe the rosé lifestyle?

How much of the recent popularity of rosé is due to trendy lifestyle marketing?

Why does Provence come to mind first, when it comes to rosé?

Why did Chateau d’Esclans’ entry level rosé, Whispering Angel, get so popular so quickly?



The Hamptons affluent New Yorkers where it’s known as “Hampton’s Gatorade.”

Is Provence the only region in the world where 100% of the rosé is made in a dry style?

Why are some people obsessed with getting the palest rosé? Does paler mean better?

Like smallest bubbles in champagne?

You can read all 98 comments here on Facebook:

Lise Charest Gagne34:56 I love the salmon colour rose mostly from Provence and I love it with a nice salty grilled cheese on a Friday after a long week

Allison Fader5:54 Allison Fader from Kelowna here….the Okanagan wineries have been producing many more Rose’s in the last couple of years.

Lynda Fedor Michaels12:21 When I was growing up, my mom and her friends occasionaly drank Mateus Rose- inexpensive but consistent and the shape of the bottle was unique! Not a fan, but the memories of my mom with her girlfriends make me smile. :)

Beverly Asleson52:41 Thank you Jill a great show and I will be looking for some of the Rose you have mentioned to buy.


Cindy Lowe Rynning12:15 Natalie, how did you fall in love with wines from Provence?


The Center for Rosé Research in Provence in southeast France has codified rosé according to its hue. What’s the descriptor for the palest rosé? Darkest? Any in between those that are interesting?

Ballet slipper, onion skin, “œil de perdrix” (means partridge’s eye in French), referring to the pale pink colour of the eye of a partridge when it’s dying.

What should we look for on a bottle of Provençal rosé?

Côtes de Provence, the largest appellation with more than 20,000 hectares and segmented into four sub-appellations: Côtes de Provence Sainte-Victoire, Côtes de Provence Fréjus, Côtes de Provence La Londe and Côtes de Provence Pierrefeu.

Lynn van der Linde23:24 Hello Jill! Rose is our quintessential summer lunch wine! Normally paired with pizza on the grill. What’s your favourite pink wine food pairing?
Cheryl JP12:23 Spent 3 weeks in Provence this past September. Enjoyed the Rosé, the markets and the people.


Guyanne Desforges37:32 sometimes I will pair Rose with the colour of the food such as salmon or shrimps….

Cindy Lowe Rynning23:25 Surprisingly, Natalie and Jill, the wines paired beautifully with burgers, eggplant hummus, garlic pita, and the shock of the meal, a kale salad!! All wines were a blend of Grenache, Cinsault, Syrah but one included Merlot and another included Rolle (Vermentino). Exceptional!



Provence is the sunniest place in the whole of France.

How does the wind influence winemaking?

Tell us about the famous wind, the Mistral. How fast does it blow? How long? What does it do to the vineyards?

Is it this wind, said to drive people insane?

185 km/h (115 mph): usually blows during winter and spring, sometimes lasts more than a week.

Ann Bedard36:55 Being a (retired) wine maker from Sonoma during the 70’s & 80’s we were “Rose Wine Snobs( example white zinfandel)
Jamal Uddin4:57 LCBO seems to want us to buy on line.I will miss the romance of holding the bottle in before deciding to buy it.Old fashion perhaps.
Gus Clemens1:12 Provence (and rosé in general) fan. Texas viewer.
Jeff Burrows31:35 We’re both Provence and Jill Barth fans!



How are rosé wines made in a more low touch fashion today than say 5 years ago?

Let’s go even further back in time: As France’s oldest wine region, how has Provence influenced viticulture globally? What specifically was developed there first?

The Phoeniceans settled there around 600 BCE.

Did the Greeks introduce winemaking to Provence, or rosé winemaking?


Lynn van der Linde35:28 Ooh! Thinking poutine is a good pairing with rose!
Lise Charest Gagne46:32 What’s your feedback on people’s interest in organic or sustainable


Johanna Quartel38:53 Time changed, so Saint Aix in my glass. Inspired by tonight’s topic.




What were those wines like, in taste and colour?

These early wines were pale, made in a free-run fashion with a flash maceration.

You mention, that by the 2nd century BC, the Romans made an alliance and introduced red wines, but rosé still dominates. White and rosé wines were reserved for the aristocracy and clergy.

What are your favourite food pairings for rosé?

How about some unusual or weird ones?

What really doesn’t pair well with rosé?

Ann Bedard37:37 UNTIL we were introduced o French wine OMG exquisite


Lynn van der Linde49:59 Jill, it’s been so great hearing from you. Thanks!
Lynda Fedor Michaels27:00 I’m a fan of Gerard Bertrand. Clean, fresh, and a hint of pink grapefruit.




Let’s turn now to wine trends more generally.

Why is there no better time to be a wine drinker than in 2019?

Access to new wines, technology improving: online buying and learning, virtual labels and more options for buying wine without leaving home, emergence of wine delivery services and grocery stores dropping of orders.

Greek, Austrian, Slovenian, Slovak and Portuguese wines get more popular? Why?


Lynda Fedor Michaels30:07 Is there a food you wouldn’t pair with Rose?
Catherine Flemming52:21 Thank you for the great discussion this evening, Catherine from Montreal. Love to pick up different bottles of Rose wines

Paul E Hollander8:03 We were at our favorite grocery earlier today. While I had a beer, Patti had a glass of Sabine Rose Coteaux D’Aix En Provence. Very enjoyable.




Are we getting too geeky and hipster with natural wine and grape names that no one can pronounce?

Might that make wine more intimidating?

Which regions offer the best value when it comes to wine?

Sparkling wine from new places. French crémant and Spanish cava, bubbles from Brazil, Chile, Australia and New Zealand are set to over-deliver. American sparkling wine producers, small-production, craft-style sparkling wines.


Guyanne Desforges21:27 my ‘go to” Rosé is the Ontario Malivoire Lady Bug – to me close to the Provence style


Lynn van der Linde52:37 Rose = spring is around the corner!
Gus Clemens32:31 Urban Provence UP Rosé? Recently reviewed it and enjoyed.




Red blends, Chardonnay and Riesling from the Columbia Valley in Washington state

Semillon, Chardonnay and Shiraz from Australia’s Hunter Valley

Uco Valley, Mendoza in Argentina Malbec

Pinot Noir Cru Beaujolais

off-beat areas in Greece, Austria and South America

German Riesling





French rosé from regions outside of Provence are more affordable, especially from Languedoc, Loire, Rhône Valley, Gascony and Bordeaux.

Why is the trend not so much about new wine regions in the US, but rather about evolution?

Regions knowing what they do best, soil, climate, grapes, methods.


Elizabeth MacSween6:58 Tavel my first exposure, got me hooked!


Paul E Hollander0:00 Ugh, there goes the planned cruise to Alaska in 2020. Now, we want to go to Provence on a river cruise.


Peter Neilson32:54 Really enjoying this discussion on Rose’! For me, it’s easy to overlook.




How is the California wine industry dealing with extreme drought and temperature increases?

Replanting of different varieties in order reorient to climate shifts

How is land management changing?

How is wine a barometer for the way we live?

Jason Or Jill Barth0:00 Thanks everyone! Can’t wait to respond to all these great comments and questions. I’m conceiving a blog post on all these suggestions!

Casey French31:13 Looking forward to enjoying a recommendation from you!

Paul E Hollander29:21 We love the Cote de Rose.





Dave Head38:52 We enjoy Lampe de Medusa a rose from Provenance

Rick Dalderis48:31 I like Rose’ with curry dishes.


Peter Neilson51:57 Loved this interview!





Johanna Quartel35:25 Sorry–a bit off-topic: LCBO has changed their website as of two weeks ago. Makes it more onerous to find a particular wine. You now have to enter a postal code or city instead of getting a list of the locations that have the wine being sought. Or just go to the Vinatages website. Complain!! Time changed, so Saint Aix in my glass. Inspired by topic.

Jay Black52:56 Great Stuff ☺️

Dean Gamanos0:00 Love Provence…love Rose…I’ll be watching!




Lori Kozma0:00 From Edmonton. Sorry I joined in so late; I just finished watching the video chat. I love rosé; it gets along with everyone! I attended a wine dinner just this past Wednesday, featuring Gérard Bertrand wines, presented by Nicolas Galy, their representative in Canada. We had the Cote des Roses with the salad, which was well-paired. This is one of our favourite rosés. Nicolas’ explanation for the inspiration of the rose bottom of the bottle was that in the spring when you drive down the coastal road, the fields are blooming with roses! I would love to see that!

I really enjoyed Jill and I am looking forward to her book being published. Cheers! 🍷

Jill Barth0:00 More on the color spectrum: https://www.forbes.com/…/the-definitive-guide-to…/…











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