Hit & Miss: Susana Balbo 2018 Rosé Signature with Baked Coconut & Panko Shrimp & Dill-Infused Salmon Tartare with Sea Salted Potato Chips

Wine: Susana Balbo 2018 Rosé Signature 13.2% $20
Origin: Valle de Uco

Taste: Gleaming in appearance with a pale salmon color, this wine has a teasing, almost evasive nose. Light and airy, it tastes of peach fuzz and watermelon rinds. A fun, phenolic pithiness nicely balances the brisk acidity that surges on the minerally but quick finish. It’s a fun, uncomplicated aperitivo. 85 points (Loved the curvy, sleek bottle!)

Expectation: I was surprised how this blend dominated by 60% Malbec clearly let its Pinot Noir companion take the lead. Its elegance is so delicate as to be rather neutral. This coupled with its good structure should give it plenty of pairing flexibility. 

Hit: Baked Coconut & Panko Shrimp
The light sweetness of the coconut meshed nicely with the wine’s early summer fruits while the savory counterparts of panko and shrimp connected with the wine’s river bed finish. The racy frame did a nice job of matching the crunch of the crispy coconut and panko, too.

Miss: Dill-Infused Salmon Tartare with Sea Salted Potato Chips
I thought the duo of fish and sea salt would sing with this rosado’s minerality. There was initially a nice blend of neutral tones between the wine’s light fruit and the earthy potato chip. However, the dill was a flavor game changer, making the wine seem a bit thin in fruit. Additionally, despite the 13.2% abv, the wine’s reserved fruit profile struggled to support the fat of the freshly-cut salmon.