Union Wine Co., Underwood Rosé in a Can

The Wine of the Week: Underwood Rosé

by Annette Tomei

My new mission…

to taste things I’ve never tasted before – either because I’m a snob, I can’t afford it, or it’s just a little too weird. I’ll let you know what I thought, and then you can decide for yourself if you will make the splurge, or take the leap into the strange but potentially delicious unknown!

NV, Union Wine Co., Underwood Rosé Wine in a Can, Oregon

Underwood Rosé in a canIt’s summer where I am – time to hit the beach/park/pool. And also time to find the best beverage to transport, chill, and dispose of (in an environmentally-considerate manner) easily.

It’s a Beer – It’s a Cider – It’s a Wine?

It seems like the can is the new thing in casual wine, and casual is the new thing in wine. Of course, it fits perfectly into your old college “beer cozy” or a tote bag. It requires no special tools, and comes in a single-serving portion… sort of. Please note: 375 ml is the same as a fancier half bottle (2-3 portions), and 12% ABV is about twice the alcohol content of most beverages in similar containers. So, please enjoy responsibly.

So, How Does it Taste

I tasted this wine both from a glass and straight from the can. Though not sparkling, it has some pleasant, mild effervescence. Initial aromas of pink grapefruit, nectarines, and watermelon carry through on the palate. This wine has plenty of acidity, but it was more creamy than mouthwatering. When tasting from a glass, the flavor was powerful up front but finished quickly with a bone-dry, hollow white pepper aroma. Tasting from the can, the fruit flavors were riper and more consistent, and lasted through the juicy finish. Lesson learned: it comes in its own sippy-cup, why dirty a glass?

This wine will pair nicely with the easy-going foods you will most likely see in similar surroundings – guacamole, hummus, kale salads, fresh goat cheeses, charcuterie, and other nibbles.

The Verdict

For a summer refresher, it’s good. At $7/can, I would much rather buy the same wine in bottle form – Union Wine Company also offers Underwood Oregon Rosé, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Gris for approximately $14/750 ml bottle. Also available in cans: Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, The Bubbles, and Rosé Bubbles.

Annette is a food and beverage educator and consultant. She is also a professional chef who frequently contributes delicious recipes to She can be found at

Dedicated to the Champagne Lovers–5 wines you’ll want to try

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Like just about ever other wine writer, I tend to save my stories on Champagne for the holiday season. Unfortunately, that only helps to perpetuate the idea that Champagne is a celebration-only wine. Sure, it’s effervescence seems to put everyone in a party mood, but that shouldn’t mean that you limit your Champagne intake only to birthdays, weddings and New Year’s Eve! Read more

Affordable Wines for Romantic Occasions

Woman on Wine--affordable wines for romance

Woman on Wine

with Amy Reiley

An inexpensive wine CAN be a perfect choice for a romantic celebration, here’s why:

A few weeks ago, the marketing team for Noble Vines approached me. They pitched me on the notion that affordable wines are a viable choice for a romantic evening, be it Valentine’s Day, an anniversary, or whatever day you’re celebrating. I thought about it for a while and realized they have a solid argument. I mean, we always point to “special occasion” wines for making romance. But it is absolutely true that inexpensive wines can fit the bill just as nicely, depending on the circumstance. Read more

Try a New Wine

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with Amy Reiley

Now is the perfect time to expand your gastronomic horizons and try a new wine

This month’s column is inspired, in part, by a shopping trip to K & L, one of the West Coast’s most interesting wine retailers. I wanted to try a new wine and this wine store had more interesting and unusual wines than familiar favorites. Read more

Summer & Sancerre–what to drink during the warm months

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Woman on Wine

with Amy Reiley

I sincerely like Sancerre. A few years ago, lauded wine critic Lettie Teague called it the Tom Hanks of wine. In other words, it’s the wine everyone likes. It may not knock your socks off, (but every once in a while, it does). And it probably isn’t going to linger in your mind as a part of some great gastronomic experience. Though you never know when you might strike gold. But you always know you’re going to enjoy it. It will go well with your meal. And you’re going to have a nice night.

Sancerre is made from Sauvignon Blanc grapes, but that wasn’t always the case. Until the late nineteenth century, the region was primarily planted with Pinot Noir and Gamay. When the vines were destroyed by phylloxera, some genius replanted the region with Sauvignon Blanc—and then things took off.  (I should mention that there still are red Sancerre. A small quantity of vineyards were replanted with the Pinot Noir grape.) Quality in the region remained generally high—one secret to the success for sure. But that’s been changing a bit. A few producers with more of an eye on the bottom line than on French pride are diluting the market with some less than quality wines. But, there’s still plenty of good and even great Sancerre out there.

So, if you’re inclined to sip Sauvignon Blanc, why wouldn’t you want to drink Sancerre? It’s gentler than it’s New Zealand counterpart. The wines often have a mineral or flinty note and bright but bitter acidity. Here are just a few of the Sancerre I like to pair with summer.

Sancerre2014 Barton & Guestier
Made by a popular wine company well known for good value wines, it offers hints of oyster shells and a lemongrass and lime acidity. Ok, it’s kind of like starter Sancerre but what’s wrong with a wine you can always count on?!

2014 Alain Gueneau “Le Guiberte”
This wine offers a brilliant balance of sweetness and bitterness. The way the flavors of honey and sweet, cut grass play off one another on the tongue makes for a delightful tasting experience.

2014 Domaine des Brosses
This Sauvignon blanc offers a perfectly harmonized blend of citrus and hay. My favorite part is the finish, which shows classic minerality and a surprise of jalapeno pepper-like heat.