I have always been a big fan of rosé wine. Almost every red wine producer also makes at least one rosé, if not for release, then definitely for their tasting rooms and pleasure.
The first wines of any vintage, rosés are all pretty much, crisp, clean, floral, fruit forward, light to medium body and just plain delicious! What they are not is what most American wine drinkers think of when they see pink and that is sweet, cool aide tasting nonsense called blush wines.
Let’s start with how most rosé is made. Saignée (French: [sɛɲe]; French for “bleed”) method is the practice of removing (“bleeding off”) some of the juice from the must in order to more deeply concentrate the phenolics, color and flavor the red wine. For the laymen, red wine gets its color, and most of the finishing flavors, from the skins of the grape. (most red wine grapes, in fact all but one, are white “meated”) After the grapes are pressed, the wine rests with the must, (all the skins and grape particles) creating a crust like covering. If you’ve ever read any tasting notes many red wines will state how the wine received daily “punch down” this is the winemaking team pushing and breaking up that crust of skins and grape material to deepen color and flavor intensity. It is very common to “bleed” the tanks to get more wine to skin contact. That “bleed” becomes rosé.
These are global beverages, not relegated to the fancy elite or not to the vin ordinaire but are found in every nook and cranny and at every price point. The epicenter for rosé is the French wine region Provence which is on the Mediterranean coast. There are a multitude of producers that grow and blend just Rosé, and the styles are varied and worth seeking out.
We are featuring four killer rosés:
Graham Beck Brut Rose, nv, Stellenbosch
Henri Bourgeouis Sancerre Rosé
Pisoni Family “Lucy”
Brunn Blauer Zweigelt Rosé, Austria