As most grapefriends know, I drink rosé all year round. Most people, however, associate it with summer and really that’s fine with me if that’s what it takes to get people to try it out.
One thing I’ve noticed lately is that people have serious rosé preferences for either pale or ruby. I get that you might be more in the mood for one or the other, but I don’t get why you’d only drink one type. That bugs me as much as when people say the only drink red wine or only drink white – you’re missing out on half the wine world!
As with any wine, the color of rosé comes from the skin of the grape and the time spent on those skins during the winemaking process. The thinner the skin and lesser the time, the lighter the color will be.
So the pale salmon rosés come from Pinot Noir grapes (like awesome ones from the Willamette Valley) or more popularly from Grenache and Cinsault grapes in Provence. Deeper ruby ones generally come from thicker-skinned grapes like Sangiovese or Tempranillo – lots of good ones from Spain (where it’s called rosado) and Italy (rosato).
I love the pales on a hot day with a light shellfish lunch – total perfection. And if you’re kickin’ it waterside, the pales will also be your grapefriend. But when you’ve got heavier food, like a tuna nicoise or steak salad, a ruby one is amazing. Got a charcuterie plate? A ruby’s gonna blow your mind. And when you’re eating spicy stuff, I usually find that the pales don’t totally hold up and would go for a rosé somewhere in the middle.
There’s a whole range of rosé out there – taste the rainbow. Here are a few of my faves (of all shades):
chene bleu, $28
One of my fave rosés EVER. It’s a Grenache-Syrah blend that’s made biodynamically so it’s just packed with flavor – raspberry, strawberry, ripe peach. Mind blower. Can’t recommend it more.
charles & charles, $11
My go-to. Watermelon and peach, perfectly priced. And the label is just cool.
This is made from Pinot Noir but has a little more heft to it than you’d expect. Strawberry and white cherry, pink rose petals, and excellently balanced with a stony minerality. I opened this with a few friends and everyone agreed it was fantastic.
This one is totally funky and cool – it’s from Hungary (not kidding) and made from Cab, Syrah, Cab Franc, Merlot, a grape I’ve never even heard of, Kekfrankos. It’s got a good ripe strawberry thing going on, but then also something savory and meaty. Would be great with charcuterie and even aged Gouda or cheddar. Plus, just cool to be a little different and serve a rosé from Hungary.
inman endless crush, $20
Love this one! Gorgeous, elegant yellow apple, peach, just-picked strawberry, and a spritz of orange. The winemaker made it for her husband on their 20th anniversary to honor their never-ending crush on each other. Lucky for us, we get a great wine out of it!
terres de saint louis, $11
Lovely and light white peach and apricot flavor. This is from the Coteaux Varois in Provence and mostly made with Grenache, Cinsault, and Syrah. My grapefriend Diane opened this poolside and it was a perfect pairing.
other good rosé reads:
rosé fun facts
how it’s made (not by mixing red & white)
I am a big rose’ fan, always have been whether it’s light or dark I love it. Had a rosato the other night with flank steak salad. Wonderful.
My food preference exactly! Cheers 🙂
I’m in the Rose all year club, too!
How can you leave out our beloved Whispering Angel!? 🙂
Assuming this is someone I know 🙂 I had it in Rosé Week last year and is by far not one of my faves!
Ooh yay, it’s finally here! Learning about rose is a goal of mine for the summer (dream big, I know) so I’ll be checking off every bottle on this list til I find my fave. Happy Rose Week! xx
This is the week for you then! Good reads in the links at the end too.
I love it . . . a rainbow of Rosé! Stoller is one of our favorites . . . Salud!
As far as Rosé, I like the ones from Tavel. Like that they are full bodied and can stand up to most foods. There also some Garnacha Rosé from Spain that are quite nice.
Love both too!
This is awesome. I just had the Charles & Charles last night. It was great.
I love it!
I’m typically not a rose fan, but I love the Terre Rouge Vin Gris d’Amador. I also just went tasting in Napa last weekend, and Black Stallion Rose (Syrah I think). Nice and dry, not too sweet. As a red fan, these are perfect for me in the summer!
I am a HUGE fan of Rosé any time of year, it complements so many delicious foods especially rich fish, chicken or even steak! I am not sure if you’ve ever had Paruss Rosé but it is amazing and unfortunately somewhat difficult to find. I love it! Thanks for highlighting Rosé!
You should come to Paris and we can do a rosé tasting 🙂
By the way, have your ever tried Indian rosé? I was very positively surprised, but I do not remember the name anymore.. As you say in one of your articles, spicy food and rosé go very well together.
No – but I love rosé with Indian food, interesting!
I also drink rosé year-round and am glad it is finally catching on in North America. It is easier to find good, crisp, dry rosé here than it once was & I’m glad to know I’m not alone in my crusade to bring rosé love to this side of the pond! Can’t wait to try some of your recommendations! I also suggest L’orangeraie– delicious!
I too love Rose’ Thanks for listing some that I will need to try. Here are a few I have tried and enjoyed recently. St Francis Rose’ is excellent! Hard to find but can get it from Fred himself, Scherrer Winery Rose’. Also just had a Martin Ray Rose’ Yum!
Have you tried AIX from Provence? That is my go-to rose. Light, bright and great on a hot summer day (or for a Thanksgiving meal)!! Thanks for the article on rose’s! I feel they don’t get enough love 🙂
Ditto – I do a whole week each summer to reco some good ones!
You should try some of the rose from Lebanon! Massaya and ixsir especially good!
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