If you’re a wine lover, like us, the arrival of summer has you thinking PINK! Let’s talk about how rosé rose to fame, the factors that influence rosé, and our can’t-miss tips on how to pair rosé with food!
Rosé has secured its place as “the” drink of summer. How did it rise to fame in the states?
When many Americans think of rosé, their first thought is the sweeter styled white zinfandel, which was discovered by Bob Trinchero with Sutter Home in 1972, quite by accident while experimenting with the zinfandel grape! Visitors of the tasting room found a fondness for the resulting wine, and the masses demanded more production. He ramped up production in 1975 when, for reasons unknown, the fermentation stopped at around 2% residual sugar, leaving a noticeable sweetness. People loved the resulting product, and white zinfandel became extremely popular over the following decades.
The one, perhaps unfortunate, result of the rise of white zinfandel and its style is that Americans tend to assume that all rosés or pink wines are sweet, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Dry rosés are the norm all over the world, including France, Italy, and Spain. Someone who doesn’t particularly enjoy a sweeter style rosé wine such as white zinfandel would very likely find much enjoyment in the drier styles that are available.
What are the factors that influence a rosé?
There are many factors that influence a rosé, including grape variety, region and terroir in which the grapes are grown, winemaking styles, techniques, traditions, and, of course, market demand. For instance, the rosés of Provence are typically made by the direct press method, which involves gently pressing the grapes and collecting the juice after it has had only about 1-4 hours macerating on the skins, resulting in a very pale-colored, light and fresh style of rosé. In many other regions of France such as Tavel, however, it is more popular to use the saignée method of production, which allows the juice to macerate for 8-24 hours, then bleed off the skins to be fermented into rosé. This results in a deeper color, fuller body, and more aromatic wine than the direct press method.
What are some general food pairing tips when it comes to rosé?
Typically speaking, dry rosés pair quite well with lighter weight foods and summer fare, such as salads, seafood, grilled chicken, grilled vegetables, and an array of salty cheeses and snacks. Adding fresh red berries and fruit really brings its fruit flavors to the forefront. Think fresh strawberries in your salad! Or, make a nice charcuterie board containing an array of meats, cheeses, crackers, nuts, and berries for a variety of textures and flavors. A sweet rosé like our Double Date Sweet American Rosé pairs well with strongly flavored cheeses, like blue cheese, light salads and entrees that feature a sweeter element such as berries. Rosé is typically served mildly chilled and makes for a refreshing sipper during the warmer summer months.
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*Three Hearts Rosé, pictured in our featured image, is currently out of stock.