Rosé is made when the skins of red grapes are in contact with the wine for a very short time. The winemaker chooses the quality and length of this process called maceration and decides when to remove the red grape skins (the source of the red pigment)
Rosé Wine Flavors
The primary flavors of rosé wine are flowers, red fruit, citrus, and melon. Depending on the grape variety, the rosé wine is made with will greatly vary the flavor.
How is Rosé Wine Made
There are three primary ways to make rosé:
Red wine grapes are left to rest in the juice for 2–20 hours and then fermented as a white wine (without skins). The maceration method is, for sure, the most common type of rosé we know.
Saignée or "Bleed" Method
The Saignée ("San-yay") method is when during the first few hours of making red wine, some of the juice is moved away into a new vat to make rosé. This method is very common in wine regions that make fine red wines such as Napa and Sonoma, but saignée wines are pretty rare.
Way more uncommon, the blending method is reserved only to a tiny fraction of wine produced these days. Back in the time, it was more popular to mix a little bit of red wine into a batch of white wine to make rosé.
What Rosé Should I Drink? A Guide to Styles of Rosé Wine
Rosé is made when the juice of red wine is strained from its skins before it becomes too dark. Depending on which winemaking technique was used, and more specifically, which grape variety was chosen, there is a Rose style for each palate.
Here's a quick and insightful guide for you to pick your new favorite sunset wine:
Lean and Herbal Rosé
Rosé from Provence is so trendy right now! Consumer's all over the world love it because it's fresh, crisp, and dry style. It is incredibly versatile for almost any food pairing: even a juicy burger will make a fantastic match!
Pinot Noir Rosé
Pinot Noir delivers a delicate and fruity wine: full of bright acidity and subtle aroma of watermelon, raspberries, and strawberries. Often dry, Pinot Noir rose pairs amazingly with fresh goat cheese salad and crab.
Known to produce brilliant ruby red hue, Grenache-based rose display notes of ripe strawberry, orange, and hibiscus. With moderately high acidity, and with a medium body, you'll want to serve them cold to keep them zesty. Can you picture it with Greek Gyros with dill tzatziki?
In the glass, Sangiovese Rose is bright with a copper-red hint. In the nose, it shows fresh strawberries, green melon, roses, and yellow peach complemented by bright acidity. Moroccan flavors go amazingly with this style.
With a pale coral hue, Mouvedre Rose (and mainly Bandol) are round and full-bodied compared to most Rosés. Mourvèdre is known to be expressive and floral. Grilled lamb, Olives, and fresh pita pairs perfect with the smoke and dried herb notes of these wines.
Rioja and other winemaking regions of Spain are leading the way with Tempranillo rose. Expect pale pink hue and herbaceous notes of watermelon, strawberry, and meaty notes. Are you getting taco truck food? Grab a glass of Rioja.
Syrah and Cabernet Rosé
Typically made with the "Saignée Method," Syrah and Cab rosé has a deeper color and a bolder character. Notes of white pepper, green olive, and cherry are typical. Are you thinking of pairing it with Pepperoni pizza? Absolutely.
Zinfandel Rosé (a.k.a. White Zinfandel)
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Possibly the most famous rosé in the US, it is made in an 'off-dry' style. It offers flavors of cotton candy, lemon, and green melon. Its moderately high acidity makes it an excellent match for Thai food.