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Drinks: Refreshing, exceptional for summer

Courvoisier Rose

Courvoisier Rose Photo Credit: Handout

On the cusp of summer, it's time for something new.

One comes from a very traditional name: Courvoisier. It's Courvoisier Rosé, a deep-maroon blend of Cognac and red-wine grapes.

You're not going to mistake it for what Victor Hugo once termed the "brandy of the gods." This is an unusual instance in which you'll enjoy Cognac chilled. The beverage, which has hints of blackberry and vanilla, becomes a refreshing alternative and an easygoing introduction to the Cognac family.

Courvoisier Rose is 36 proof. A bottle is about $25.

Port generally doesn't evoke warm weather. But a slightly chilled Tawny Port is an exception. So look for the Warre's Otima 10 Year Tawny, which works equally well as an aperitif or an after-dinner treat. The Port is light, nutty, satisfying. About $25. Fruity Cockburn's Special Reserve Porto is appealing this time of year, too. Have a sip with cheesecake or, even better, some blue cheese and pears. About $18.

Moving to brews, there is an extremely limited edition production that will be unveiled tomorrow at an event in Washington, D.C.

SAVOR Flowers is the curious, entertaining work of Sam Calagione and Jim Koch, the founders of Dogfish Head and Samuel Adams. They used a base of distilled rosewater and mixed dried lavender, rosebuds, hibiscus and jasmine during the brewing. Koch also came across a new hop breed with a big floral quality. The result is aromatic, flavorful fun.

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