The first time I tasted the Toad Hollow, in those long ago days of newspaper wine columns, I knew I was on to something. It’s cheap, it’s consistent, and it comes from a producer that cares about the quality of its inexpensive wine. What’s not to like?

However, I have neglected to review the Toad Hollow ($10, purchased) in at least three years (though it is an original member of the $10 Hall of Fame). So let’s remedy this now as we celebrate rose and the beginning of summer. My annual rose column runs in the June magazine.

Look for lots of strawberry and acid to complement the fruit, which has always been a Toad Hollow trademark. The wine seemed a bit sweeter this vintage than in the past couple, though that may have been because it had not been in the bottle long enough for all of its bits to come together (a wine geek would describe a young wine like that as a little shocky).

Regardless, it’s still a dry wine. Chill it and drink it all summer with everything except big red meat, and even then it wouldn’t be a bad choice. And I drink it in the fall and winter, too. Can’t drink it in the spring; there usually isn’t any left.

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