I tried rosés from Brad Pitt, John Legend, Cameron Diaz, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Post Malone. LVE by John Legend and Miraval are decent wines. But Cameron Diaz’s Avaline is the only one that me or the sommelier who sipped with me would want to drink again. When the fall chill hits the air and the leaves outside start turning red, most people think it’s a sign from the universe that we must put our bottles of white wine and rosé away until spring. I, on the other hand, am very happy to sip on that lovely pink wine 365 days a year. Wanting to expand my rosé-drinking horizons, I recently set out on a mission to discover whether any of the many celebrity-branded wine labels could live up to my tried and true favorites — namely, Cote des Roses, Chateau Montaud, and Whispering Angel. I drink wine often but have no formal experience in oenology. So, I called in a family friend, retired sommelier Dorothy Jacobs, to help me appraise five wines: Miraval, owned by Brad Pitt (and formerly Angelina Jolie); LVE by John Legend; Maison No. 9 by Post Malone; Cameron Diaz’s Avaline; and Invivo X by SJP, the label’s collaboration with “Sex and the City” star Sarah Jessica Parker. We did a blind taste test to ensure the celebrities we liked best didn’t have an unfair advantage, rating each of the numbered glasses (which were poured by a third party) out of five stars. Along the way, Jacobs also busted some myths about my favorite drink. While Jacobs wasn’t particularly excited that we were exclusively drinking celebrity wines — “I don’t take them seriously, because they don’t take themselves seriously” — she was game to help me find a winner and figure out whether any of these wines were worth going to court with an ex over. Invivo, Avaline, Miraval, and LVE provided Insider with complimentary bottles of their wine for the purposes of our review. First, a word from our sommelier about drinking rosé in the fall and winter Jacobs said we should decide what wine we’re drinking based on what we plan to eat — and not by the season. “[Rosé is] very good for an aperitif, it’s refreshing, it’s not really filling, it’s light,” she said, explaining that it sparks the appetite rather than satiates it. She recommends pairing it with cheese or seafood. However, it doesn’t pair as well with red meat dishes or stews, which might be why it’s been falsely labeled a “summer” wine, according to Jacobs. But she told me I could “absolutely” drink rosé in the fall or winter. And in my house, there are no seasonal restrictions on charcuterie and cheese boards, so I think I will. Miraval (Brad Pitt and formerly Angelina Jolie) It appears that Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie stumbled into the wine business when they acquired the Miraval estate in Provence in 2008. The estate’s winemaking history predates Brangelina’s ownership; American winemaker Tom Bove, who owned it from 1992 until he sold it to the celebrity couple, was credited with rejuvenating Miraval’s operations, according to Vanity Fair. After buying the property, Pitt and Jolie continued the winemaking tradition, launching Miraval, named for the estate, in 2013. After their divorce was finalized, Jolie sold her stake in the estate in 2021 for an undisclosed amount. The following year, Pitt sued his ex-wife, saying she’d made the sale without informing him first — which was against an agreement Pitt says they’d previously made. In Jacobs ‘ opinion, the former couple’s rosé, which costs about $28 a bottle, isn’t worth going to court over. The website says the wine has “delicious citrus notes,” but Jacobs identified floral notes more prominently on the palate and didn’t consider the flavor memorable. Miraval’s flavor notes were also hard to identify, but I found it easier to finish than some of the more obviously acidic wines in our lineup, so I was more generous with my score than Jacobs for this sip alone. Miraval was my second favorite wine in our lineup. I found it easy to drink and thought the flavor was subtle, but present. Mazzeo: 2.4 Jacobs: 2 Average: 2.2/5 Invivo X by SJP (Sarah Jessica Parker) Invivo was founded in 2007, and Sarah Jessica Parker was approached by its cofounders, Rob Cameron and Tim Lightbourne, to collaborate on a collection of wines in 2019. She told LCBO that she came into the process as a mystified wine consumer who felt “ill-equipped and undeserving” of entering the wine business. Parker’s Invivo rosé, which retails for $19.99, has floral notes on the nose that Jacobs identified, but on the palate, it was so acidic that I mistook the notes for citrus. It has a long finish, so the acid lingered in my mouth, which I disliked. The flavor was simply too sour for me to drink much of it. The website boasts a finish of “strawberries, rose petals, and fresh herbs.” That may be true, but Jacobs also found the acidic element of the wine overpowering and unimpressive. Mazzeo: 2.3 Jacobs: 2.5 Average: 2.4/5 Maison No. 9 (Post Malone) Post Malone launched his wine label Maison “Rosé is for when you want to get a little fancy,” Post said in his announcement of the launch, adding that “it’s a nice switch up” and that he’d been “thinking about doing my own wine for a while.” Invivo X by SJP was acidic, but at least the flavor notes made themselves known. Jacobs identified soft peach notes on the nose and palate of Post Malone’s Maison No. 9, which costs about $22 a bottle. But it was difficult for me, as a novice wine taster, to identify any notes or anything that made this sip enjoyable — I felt like I was drinking water. It’s my least favorite wine in the lineup but pulled narrowly ahead of Invivo when we averaged our two scores. Mazzeo: 2 Jacobs: 3 Average: 2.5/5 LVE (John Legend) John Legend is also hands-on in the winemaking process. His business partner, Jean-Charles Boisset, a prominent winemaker in Napa, told Robb Report that the singer is “very, very good at tasting and blending” wine grapes. His LVE rosé is the second-best wine, in our opinion. According to the LVE by John Legend website, there should be notes of strawberry and nectarine on the palate with a peach blossom, apricot, and raspberry nose. We agreed that though we could only identify nondescript, subtle notes of citrus, fruit, and acid, it was an enjoyable sip and worth the roughly $25 it typically retails for. It’s just not as full-bodied as the website would have you believe. The flavors, though faint, were nice enough and it was definitely drinkable. Mazzeo: 2.3 Jacobs: 3 Average: 2.7/5 Avaline (Cameron Diaz) Cameron Diaz told Harper’s Bazaar that she and her business partner Katherine Power went to Europe and knocked on literal and metaphorical doors to find winemakers willing to make organic, “clean” wine with them. They then helped perfect the blends and launched their company in 2020. Avaline rosé ($24 a bottle) had an identifiable strawberry nose and palate. The finish is full and delicious, and when researching the wine after the tasting, I wasn’t surprised to learn that Diaz and Power use organic grapes (and no additives) in all of their wines. It took me a few sips of Avaline after drinking other wines to realize that it was so different from every other wine in our lineup. It has a unique flavor that I appreciated more than its competitors, which sometimes tasted more like spiked water. Mazzeo: 2.6 Jacobs: 3.5 Average: 3.1/5 Cameron Diaz’s Avaline rosé wins because its flavor and purpose were clear After two rounds of tasting celebrity rosés to perfect our ratings, break ties, and search for flavor notes, the only rosé both Jacobs and I would consider buying for ourselves is Avaline. Like many of the celebrities whose wines I tasted, I came into the process as simply an avid consumer of rosés, minimally educated on tasting and blending wines. But I know that I like refreshing rosés that aren’t flavorless, even if those flavors are subtle. From my perspective, most of these wines sacrificed flavor for subtlety so their fans (who may or may not be wine consumers) could easily enjoy them. It makes sense from a business perspective. But Diaz’s clear objective wins out — it’s an organic, strawberry-forward triumph of a rosé compared to the four other rather mediocre bottles.
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