Overheard by one of our customers, it has been the neverending summer, which to my mind has meant the neverending glass of Rosé. If I could rebrand AWC it would be called Rosieland, and not just for the indifferent and unflappable Korean bar mistress, Rosie, of the television show M*A*S*H. I love Rosé, our associates can’t keep their hands off it, and you love it as well, as long as it’s not from California.

I was going to mark the end of our ongoing tribute to the pink this weekend as the close of summer fairly much curbs its desirability, even though I personally would drink it in the dead of winter and with a steak–Bandol please. And yet as fate would have it, we have a couple of new additions coming on board starting today. One of our favorite importers of German and Austrian wines, Bill Mayer, showed us two heavy-weight examples from Austria that will segue nicely to our changing schedules, weather and mood, and be a couple of big brothers to our current offering from importer, Rudi Wiest, the light and carefree Rosé of Pinot Noir from Schloss Schonborn of Rheingau.

Not many German Rosés come across our desk, much less Austrian, and this should reward me with a solid Jeff Berlin star (wine buyer of A Cote restaurant in Oakland, and definitely the man of all things off the radar), and give you our loyal customers a unique taste of the pink from the less usual suspects. St. Laurent, Zweigelt, and Blaufrankisch are the grape stars here, the red mainstays of Austria, turned into deeply colored, richly flavored, fleshy and structural Rosés.  Flight cost $16.25.

And this is as good a time as any to remind everyone of the impeccable, hand-crafted pates and creamy duck mousse from Scott Brennan of The Fifth Quarter Charcuterie which go all so well with Rosé. $5.75 for one, $14.75 for a sampler of all three. The pork and chicken pate with sour cherries and hazelnuts is back in stock today and well worth trying for the lightness the chicken brings to the pork.

Another rebranding name my daydreams considered was Taste of Portugal. As hokey as it may sound the inspiration is right on; Portuguese wines have never been better and the food stuffs coming from the country equally fly under the radar for superb price to quality ratio. Our representative from HGC Imports, Kevin Hogan, informed me of the unusual fact there is not one Portuguese restaurant in San Francisco, much less a wine bar. We will attempt to make a minor dent in changing that here in the East Bay with a pop-up we are planning in the coming weeks featuring libations and comestibles all things Portuguese.

Such a pop-up will heartily feature the super high quality tinned fish of Portugal. Kevin informed me that if you are ever in a Portuguese wine bar, you will see the shelves lined with all manner of canned seafood which the Portuguese proudly down with a wash of Vinho Verde (don’t forget to check out the Aveleda we have on the tasting menu) and Dao and Douro reds. Along with our Portuguese spiced sardines, please try our two new products from Taste of Portugal, tasty morsels of seafood protein, Squid Stew and Octopus, both in a red sauce. $5.50 each.

Next week we will be offering a Justino Madeira flight, featuring a Colheita ’96 and ’98, and a 5 Years Old Reserve.