June 10 is National Rosé Day, but what do you know about Rosé wines? Here’s some background so you can further appreciate these wines and toast a glass or two on June 10.
What are Rosé Wines?
Rosé wines, often referred to as rosé, are a category of wines that bridge the gap between red and white wines. They are known for their beautiful pink colour, which can range from pale salmon to vibrant ruby hues, and can be still or sparkling. Rosé wines are made from a variety of red grape varietals and are typically crafted in a way that results in a refreshing and crisp flavour profile. They are incredibly versatile and can be enjoyed on their own or paired with a wide range of foods. Seafood is a great pairing for rosé wines in British Columbia.
How are Rosé Wines Made?
There are several methods to make rosé wines, the most common being the maceration method. In this process, red grape skins are left in contact with the juice for a short period, usually a few hours to a couple of days. The longer the skin contact, the deeper the colour and more intense the flavours. Another method is the saignée method, where a portion of the juice from red wine production is “bled off” to create a more concentrated red wine, while the remaining juice is used to make rosé wine.
Where Are Rosé Wines Made?
Many regions around the world are renowned for producing high-quality rosé wines. Provence in France is considered the benchmark region for rosé, known for its pale, delicate and dry styles. The Loire Valley, particularly the sub-region of Anjou, produces vibrant and fruity rose wines. In Spain, the region of Navarra is recognized for its rosados, while in Italy, Tuscany’s rosé wines are gaining popularity. New World regions like California, Oregon, and South Africa also showcase exceptional rosé wines. Don’t forget about British Columbia. We are making rosé wines from Gamay, Pinot Noir, Syrah, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, and more.
Which Grapes Are Used for Rosé Wines?
Various grape varieties are used to make rosé wines, with some being more common than others. Grenache, Syrah, Mourvèdre, and Cinsault are frequently found in rosé wines from the Provence region. In the Loire Valley, Cabernet Franc and Gamay are often used. Other popular grapes for rose production include Pinot Noir, Sangiovese, Tempranillo, and Malbec. The flavours of rosé wines can vary depending on the grape and region, but they often exhibit notes of fresh red berries, citrus fruits, melon, and floral undertones. The acidity in rosé wines contributes to their crisp and refreshing character.
Sparkling Rosé Wines
Sparkling rosé Champagne, a pinnacle of elegance and craftsmanship, is meticulously created using traditional methods that embody the essence of luxury. To craft these captivating wines, producers start with a blend of red and white grapes, where the red grape varieties, such as Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier, impart exquisite colour and character. Prosecco, originating from the Veneto region of Italy, enchants with its charming effervescence and refreshing character. Typically displaying a pale pink colour, it is made by blending Glera and Pinot Noir, Rosé Prosecco reveals delightful notes of strawberry, raspberry, and a hint of floral sweetness. Sparkling rosé Cava, sparkling wine from Spain, is crafted with meticulous care and traditional winemaking techniques. Cava is primarily made from three grape varieties: Macabeo, Xarel-lo, and Parellada, which lend their unique characteristics to the wine. To produce a rosé, winemakers introduce the red grape varieties of Garnacha, Monastrell, or Pinot Noir into the blend.
So raise a glass of Rosé wine on June 10 and enjoy all that our upcoming summer has to offer.