Visitors to André Balazs’s swanky hotels will soon have a new wine option: The private label André Balazs Réserve Sunset Beach Rosé will be available later this month. The grapes are grown near Balazs’s Sunset Beach Hotel on Shelter Island and processed by Wölffer Estate of Sagaponack. It’s a blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, and Chardonnay, and Balazs argues that it can challenge any California vino. “For rosés and whites, the South Fork is where Napa Valley was fifteen years ago,” he says. Bob Ransom, who sells Wölffer’s standard rosé at Vintage New York for $14.99 (Balazs’s will go for $40 to $50 a bottle), noticed whiffs of strawberry and cherry. “It’s nice,” Ransom said after a taste. “It’s a great afternoon summer sipper kind of thing. It’d be very nice with oysters—it’s got that crisp, briny character.” A dozen of those oysters will cost you a mere $48 at Mercer Kitchen in Balazs’s Mercer hotel.
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