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As we head into summer, one of the great wine categories of the world takes center stage: Rosé. With it’s fun pink hue and fruity, flowery flavors, rosé wine finds the spotlight in warmer months. And while many people may have had their first exposure to this wine with a sweet blush version, rosés can fall into a wide variety of flavors and styles. Read on to learn more about the basics of this pretty-in-pink wine category.
France leads the world in rosé production followed by Spain and the United States. The grapes traditionally used for rosé wines include everything from Pinot Noir and Grenache to Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah. With a few exceptions, these grapes tend to have clear juice, and the wines made with them gain their red hue from contact with the grapes’ skin during fermentation. (Fun fact: Grape juice is colored the same way!) The longer the grapes have skin-contact with the liquid, the more saturated the colors become. In order to get the trendy pink color, Rosé wines can be made in the following ways:
Typically, rosé wines tend to fall into three categories: dry, sweet and sparkling. Dry rosés typically come from old-world vineyards, like those in France, and have a bright acidity that pair well with grilled meats, seafood pastas and fresh salads. Sweet wines are typically produced in America and usually come in bright pink and have fruit-forward flavors. Try a sweeter rosé with smoky or spicy meats, rich sauces and fatty fish. Sparkling wines more commonly include flavors of red fruit, cherries, citrus, and white flowers, and can be either dry or sweet. Sparking rosé also pairs well with all kinds of foods, from a simple light salad to a hearty BBQ meal. With so many different regions and flavors, rosé pairing options are endless!
According to IWSR Drinks Market Analysis, sparkling rosé wine volume consumed in the U.S. increased by 118% from 2015 to 2020 — compare that to the 1.5% growth of the still wine category overall over the same time period. Retailers and on-premise accounts alike would do well to add rosé to their offerings, especially during the warmer weather seasons of spring and summer.
Empire represents many delicious brands throughout our network including Whispering Angel from Provence, France, which is a very popular brand carried in Georgia, North Carolina and Tennessee. Maison No. 9 is a French project started by Post Malone and can be found in Tennessee and Georgia. California producer Shannon Ridge makes a variety of different rosés and is represented in Colorado, Georgia, and North Carolina. Nortico makes delicious rosé in Portugal and is found in Colorado. Variety is the spice of life, so be sure to explore all the different ways rosé can be made: there are so many fun and delicious wines to try in this ever-growing category.