One of the Best Wines in the World Is an $8 Rosé

May 31, 2017

Over the course of two weeks in April, a panel of wine experts convened in London for the International Wine Challenge’s Great Value Awards, a competition that some have dubbed the “Oscars of the wine industry.” They spent those weeks rigorously blind tasting nearly 13,000 wines to determine which varieties were among the world’s finest, regardless of price tag. Among the Silver Medal winners was a dry rosé variety that goes for roughly £5.99—that’s just under $8—at Aldi.

Exquisite Collection Côtes De Provence 2016, as it’s called, boasts a mouthfeel that’s ripe and quartzy. Aldi bills it as an ideal companion to grilled fish or salads. The variety is by far the cheapest medal winner in the competition. It also won out in the hyper-specific category of best rosé under £8.

The wine was created with the aid of winemaker Jean Claude Mas, in a concerted bid by the supermarket chain to work against the notion that fine wine must be expensive, and democratize access to it. It’s not exactly news, after all, that the notion of “fine wine” is classed—the very phrase conjures images of upsettingly high prices and an intimidatingly impermeable vocabulary to match.

I’ve got to admit that I’m pretty susceptible to rosé fatigue, which kicks in just about every June when I see a torrent of articles singing its praises. But consider my interest in Côtes De Provence piqued by this accolade. I’m afraid Aldi's award-winning rosé is not available for sale—yet—stateside, which is a bummer, though I certainly hope this citation makes Aldi bring it to the rest of the world. Aldi, I'm waiting.

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Have you ever had this wine? Have another inexpensive wine you think is world-class? Let us know in the comments.

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Mayukh Sen is a James Beard Award-winning food and culture writer in New York. His writing has appeared in the New York Times, the New Yorker, Bon Appetit, and elsewhere. He won a 2018 James Beard Award in Journalism for his profile of Princess Pamela published on Food52.


Nancy September 27, 2017
Got 2 of the last 3 bottles they had at my local Aldi last Saturday! It's good 😊
George H. September 19, 2017
Just fyi, hits stores tomorrow.
Jennifer N. July 1, 2017
Aldi's in VA were only given 2cases each which all sold out in hours. They can't get any more back in... looking for alternatives.
PS007 June 4, 2017
Newsflash: Travel around Europe and you will find boatloads of excellent, food-friendly wines for under $10.
Kim A. June 4, 2017
Wow! That is a tease! We have Aldi in Florida, so keep us posted should this wine arrive stateside.
Whiteantlers May 31, 2017
This sounds lovely!

With Philadelphia's archaic laws regarding sale of alcohol, I hope that when this is finally released, there will be a place to buy it. We have the Aldi chain here, but who knows if they are licensed to sell booze. : (
Rhonda35 June 1, 2017
It's not only Philly with the restrictive alcohol sales laws, but also the entire state of Pennsylvania. Such a hassle!
Whiteantlers June 1, 2017
Thanks for the correction, @Rhonda35. It is the whole state. I grew up here but moved away for many years and grew accustomed to California living, where you can pick up a 6 pack of beer or a bottle of booze almost anywhere. I would love to see the PA. chains of Trader Joes, Aldi, Whole Foods and so on carry potables.
Betsey June 1, 2017
Minnesota too. Whenever I visit another state and see wine at Target, it wierds me out a little.
Ann S. June 4, 2017
Ok, but it is getting better. There are now grocery stories (!) carrying beer and wine within walking distance of my dry town. We have an ALDI - would love if they could carry this.