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It’s Fine If Malia Drinks Underage, But Here Are Some Better Rosès For Next Time


The online edition of the British tabloid Daily Mail threw a match into gasoline when they released several photos of former first daughter Malia Obama on vacation in Miami. In a few of the photos, Malia can be seen drinking what appears to be the ultra-popular Whispering Angel brand of rosè wine, which the tabloid estimates cost Malia a staggering $80.

This fine piece of investigative journalism caused Malia’s name to turn into a hashtag, as the conservative internet was rumored to have turned themselves inside out in outrage over the fact that Malia is not yet 21. However, other than the Daily Mail’s own accusations of underage drinking, it is practically impossible to find an actual example of the supposed moral outrage of hypocritical, beer-loving conservatives.

Interestingly, I did find several prominent figures of the media coming to Malia’s aid in this time of great fabricated crisis. I was particularly impressed by this incredibly insightful tweet by former conservative Ana Navarro, who dutifully points out the hypocrisies “to those hating on Malia Obama.” If you are one of the invisible haters I could not find and you haven’t heard Navarro’s powerful condemnation of you, here it is again.

Well, she isn’t wrong on her first point. Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh is on the record many times over about how much he loved beer in his youth. Her second mark on the amount of Florida golfing Trump partakes in could be tricky to back up, but I digress.

It is her third point that makes my head hang in dismay. But before I break wine nerd on Navarro and everyone else admiring this bottle of rosè, I must say, in fairness to Malia, very few 20-year-olds in history have been credited with having any taste in wine whatsoever. She could be doing much, much worse.

In my own youth I preferred a much less classy brand of booze widely known as “whatever I could get my hands on.” It was often purchased by my friends and a kind older sibling, and it was usually some horrifically flavored wine cooler like “fuzzy navel” or “pomegranate raspberry.”

So, the truth is that Malia is leagues ahead of most of us youthful drinkers, and her lovely beachside party—although invaded by The Daily Mail—appeared to be anything but an example of a careless rager. But I will take this opportunity to trash Whispering Angel and beg you all to not spend your $80 that way.

Whispering Angel normally retails for about $17, so I am shocked that anyone has the stones to charge $80 for it. In 2016, 3.2 million bottles of the stuff was produced, accounting for about 20 percent of America’s entire Rosè consumption. That type of volume is generally reserved for factory jug wine, knock-off Franzia, and Yellow Tail.

Sure, you get it cold enough and it’s just fine going down—truly wine-flavored wine. But the compliments stop there. There’s an ocean of incredible wine you can buy with that $80. And for anyone wondering if the rumor was true, every season really is rosè season.

Rosè Champagne: The real stuff from France. Truly, for $80 you can buy a really nice one. Pink Champagne has always been and will always be my Achilles heel. At that price point, try Chartogne-Taillet “Le Rosè,” Egly-Oriet Brut Rosè, and Marguet “Shaman” Brut Rosè Grand Cru.

Domaine Tempier Rosè from Bandol, France. This tiny, medieval town is also in Provence, where the famed Whispering Angel sources some of their grapes. The difference is that Tempier has only a handful of vineyards and is one of only a few producers that make wine in this very small and very special parcel of land.

Nicoletta de Fermo ‘Le Cince’ Cerasuolo d’Abruzzo Rosato, from Italy. In fairness, this one isn’t for everyone. The Italians definitely prefer their pink wines a lot darker and a lot meatier in flavor. However, this is a ridiculously good producer that is neighbor to the very famous producer of gamey rosato, Valentini. Meant to be drunk much closer to red wine temperature, these wines absolutely sing with some fresh salami and funky soft cheese.

So, before people look for the bottle of pink wine they saw in the Daily Mail photos the next time they’re at the grocery store, give some of these little guys a chance. Drinking at age 20 is not new, and it’s certainly not much of a story. I’m sure Malia has some excellent bottles in her future.