By Rick Riozza

It’s not that I’ve been a bad son; it’s just that I’ve never written particularly on a Mother’s Day wine.

So no question here but we’re going to spoil her with a delightful bottle or two, half a case or a case of 12.  And in vino parlance, that means we know we can spend a bundle for some really popular high-class stuff, or, we can be judicious and find her an absolutely tasty and exciting wine where flavors dominate over price.

The sky is the limit as to what hue the wine will be—for this time of year, every varietal is on board to be considered, from crisp sparkling wines and aromatic whites to refreshing rosés and silky reds.

And there is something to the bottle itself by its shape or label that can also add to the gift. Wine marketing firms are quick to inform us that 29% of women wine shoppers will often choose a wine based solely on packaging.  So don’t discount the very appealing design art of the bottle.

With all the above in mind, let’s check out some wine ideas and recommendations.

As with Valentine’s Day, rosé wine and rosé sparklers always seem to embody love and cherishment.   These days we’re not only limited to White Zinfandel—which is still a very popular wine with the ladies, but almost every red grape varietal is wonderfully vinted to a rosé whose colors range from deep-sunset to copper.

I’m going to quickly mention a couple great tasting wines that are perfect for every occasion this spring & summer, and, are so reasonably priced as well.

No surprise here on this selection: Italians always do it right when it comes to love, family and all that stuff.  Plus this lightly sparkling rosé has a wonderful story behind it which makes enjoying the wine even more enlightening.

GiolThe Giol Rosato Frizzante IGT is a rosé made from 100% Merlot and is wholly organic.  And it is absolutely delicious!  Seductively soft pink in the glass with refreshing floral aromas and hints of cherry and freshcut strawberries.

As with most rosés, it is meant to be served chilled with the wine losing its focus as it warms.  The beautiful thing about this wine is that as it slowly warms in the glass, it continues to evolve exhibiting added nuances of fruit and floral in the aromas and flavors.

An elegant Italian-chic bottle design packaging in clear glass highlights not only its gorgeous color but makes for a stylish gift. This wine can go with pretty much any dish you can think of as it melds the freshness of sparkling wine with the complexity of Merlot.  The “Frizzante” aspect refers to a soft effervescent of tiny bubbles.

High marks on the Rosato, especially at the price of around $13! Of course mentioning “organic” no doubt brings to mind Annie Arnold owner of the Organic Wine Exchange.  And just in time for Mother’ Day, this Friday, May 8th , at Pavilions in Rancho Mirage, from around 2-6pm, Annie will be conducting a free wine tasting featuring this magnificent wine and others, so you can see for yourself the quality of the vino.  Hope to see you there.

Another rosé recommendation of a different character is the 2014 SAVED Magic Maker Rosé, from the duo we recently did a fun write-up in these pages a few weeks back (Feb 26th issue) on their scrumptious SAVED red wine blend.  Scott Cambell, contemporary artist and N.Y. street tattooist, has again collaborated with winemaker Clay Brock to share each other’s craft of bottle design and wine production.

Some fun PR on this just came across my email: “There’s a lot of ways to thank mom for everything she does, but mothers who put up with the bad-boy sons deserve something they can pour in their glass, kick back and unwind with on their special day: wine. All bad-boys have a mama’s boy inside, and whether treating mom to brunch or having a big family barbeque, they want to give her something to show their gratitude.”

This rosé blend is Pinot Noir, Grenache, Cab Franc, Orange Muscat, and Sangiovese.  A most inventive brew with the Muscat and Sangiovese hanging around.  And these grapes are regionally sourced from Monterey, Santa Maria Valley, and Paso Robles.

SAVED Magic Marker is very dry.  On the nose, it offers alluring aromas of white peach; its flavors are brightly layered with notes of tangerine, strawberries, and green apple.  A very crisp and refreshing wine.

Clay Brock comments, “Scott gets a kick out of sipping rosé . . . having that Bad-Boy image but drinking pink wine!  I love the bright acidity.”  The wine sells for around $16

Best wishes to you and yours. Cheers!

I would also like to give a great shout out to Executive Chef Joel Delmond and his culinary staff at Pinzimini Restaurant located at the Westin Mission Hills Resort.   The wine dinner held last week, pairing six exquisite dishes to the six featured world-class Antinori Italian wines, was masterfully accomplished.  And the place was filled with many local chefs and food & beverage professionals, all commenting that the evening was one of the best winemaker dinners of the season.  Bravo!

Rick is your somm-about-town entertaining & conducting at wine events and tastings.  Contact