GREENSBORO, N.C. (June 3, 2020) – There is no denying that Rosé wine is a romantic wine, but do not let the color dissuade you for mistaking it as sweet. A good rosé will have structure, finesse, balance, and elegance. Provencal rosé, with its pale, orange-pink color, is considered the most traditional style. Provence is still one of the largest rosé-producing areas, but as the popularity of this versatile wine has skyrocketed in the past few years, other well-known wine producers from California, New Zealand and Oregon are getting into the rosé game.
“I encourage guests to start an adventure of trying different rosé styles from around the world, because everyone’s taste buds are different,” said Don Poplaski, Director of Wine at The Fresh Market. “One of the biggest mysteries with rosé wine is that it is made from red grapes. The color is based on how long the skins were left on during the crush. There is actually an Italian rosé by Famiglia Pasqua called 11 minutes, which got its name from how long the skins are left on. White grapes like Viognier or Chardonnay may be blended in later, but rosé wine does not get its color by blending red and white grapes together.”
While the color of rosé is due to how long the skins are left on during the crush, the type of grapes used determines the flavor and body of the rosé.
Lighter-body rosés are typically drier, less sweet, and have a crisp acidity. These are often made from traditional rosé grapes like Grenache, Cinsault, Mourvedre, and Syrah. These are very food-friendly wines, and pair well with any cuisine from salmon to goat cheese.
Fuller-body rosés have a more robust, savory flavor profile, and pair well with heartier foods, like grilled meats. Try a Tempranillo rosé from Spain, or rosés make from Tavel or Cabernet Sauvignon.
Here are some of Don’s favorite rosés from different regions, for those who want to start their own rosé wine tasting adventure:
- Conundrum Rosé from the co-founder of Caymus Vineyards in California. It is made with 100% Valdiguié (/’Val dee gay/) grapes, which grows only in small quantities in California. This wine has a uniquely fresh, bright character with delicate fruit and a dry style.
- French Blue is a Bordeaux rosé, made with 80% Cabernet Franc, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 10% Merlot. This rosé has aromas of fresh berry fruits like strawberries and red currants. It has a good structure with the finesse and fleshy character of Merlot. Balanced and refreshing.
- Oyster Bay from the Wairau Valley in Marlborough, New Zealand is best-known for their Sauvignon-Blanc. This is the first year they are debuting their rosé wine made from 100% Pinot Noir grapes, with flavors of strawberry and red berry with floral aromas.
- A to Z Rosé, from Oregon is made with 90% Pinot Noir, 10% Chardonnay grapes, giving it a crisp yet creamy texture. With a modest, juicy acidity and low tannin levels. Fresh aromatics suggest strawberries, watermelon, cranberry, blood-orange and guava alongside pretty floral notes of rosé petals, honeysuckle, linden and subtle sweet pea flowers (linalool).
“Every day can be a rosé day. There are so many styles and regions to explore,” says Don. “It really is a food friendly wine, great for grilled foods, spicy foods and Mediterranean inspired cuisine. It is not just for summer sipping anymore, and can be enjoyed year-round”