Summer of [Rosé] Love

Food & Drink

Though summer isn’t officially here until June 21, many consider Memorial Day the unofficial start of the season. And for wine lovers, that means plenty of rosé. This will be the fourth season of my annual series on rosés of the world and every year I am pleased to see more variety and varieties. What was once considered a light quaff now take its rightful place as a category that can have some serious flavor, structure, is food friendly—all without losing its playful character.

The series starts today with a few rosé facts you can use IRL with your friends, toss out on IG or FB (come on, admit it, you still have FB friends), because, IYKYK. So, in completely random order, let’s get you started.

A French wine industry study says “a precise definition of rosé wine does not exist,” and suggests rosés are, rather, defined by their specific production methods.

Still (non sparkling) rosé wine is not a blend of red and white grapes, as many believe. The two most common methods involve either siphoning off red wine (saignée) or short- and long-term maceration, which gives the wine its color by the length of time the juice stays on the grape skins.

Saignée is a historic method loosely translated as “to bleed,” in which the winemaker “bleeds” off liquid from a tank of juice otherwise destined for red wine and from that, creates the lighter-pink wine.

The most common red grapes used for making dry rosé are: Grenache, Syrah, Mourvèdre, Carignan, Cinsault, Pinot Noir and Sangiovese. But you’ll also see rosé produced from Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon, Tempranillo, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Cerasuolo. Well, that pretty much covers the spectrum of red grapes.

A rosé by any other name can taste just as good (apologies to William Shakespeare). While the French originated the rosé name, which it’s called in English- and French-speaking countries, in Spain it’s called rosado and in Italy, Rosato. Portugal also calls it rosé, and has for a long time: Think back a couple of generations and I bet Mateus and Lancer’s Rosé were on the dinner table.

Speaking of those [sidebar 1], marketed to the United States in the 1940s after the war, Mateus and Lancer’s came onto the scene as sweet, slightly effervescent rosés. Mateus launched in 1942 and recently rebranded using the same iconic bottle but targeting a young, pool- and fun-loving crowd; Lancer’s launched in 1944 and was known for its heavy, terra-cotta-style ceramic bottles. It’s still around with an updated label design, but doesn’t have a major presence aside from novelty bottles found on ebay.

Speaking of Mateus [sidebar 2] … Mateus has celebrity connections: It was said to be popular quaff with Jimi Hendrix, Queen Elizabeth II, Pope Paul VI and Saddam Hussein. Elton John “got juiced on Mateus” in his song, “Social Disease.”

A 2015 report on the rosé wine market by the International Organisation of Vine and Wine (OIV) and by the Provence Wine Council (CIVP), estimated 2014 global rosé production represents 9.6% of global wine production (excluding sparkling wines).

Though made in many places outside its spiritual homeland of Provence and sold pretty much in every market where wine is consumed, France remains the market leader, with rosé accounting for 30% of all wine sold in France in 2014 according to the OIV/CIVP study, followed by Spain, United States and Italy.

To drive the point of its origins home, a new advertising campaign for Vins de Provence launched last week featuring local bartenders photographed in Provencal bars and restaurants emphasizing the origin of the wine.

Rosé is hot and getting hotter. Provence Rosé Group, a producer and direct importer, reports a 40% increase in global rosé consumption from 2002 to 2018. Retail sales for 750ml bottles priced $7 and more soared 1,433% between 2010 and 2020, according to bw166, a market research firm for the alcohol beverage industry.

READ MORE: There are books dedicated to Rosé ! Rosé, Understanding the Pink Wine Revolution, Elizabeth Gabay, MW; Rosé Wine; the Guide to Drinking Pink, Jennifer Simonetti-Bryan, MW: and Drink Pink, A Celebration of Rosé , Victoria James; Rosé All Day: The Essential Guide to Your New Favorite Wine, Katherine Cole.

Articles You May Like

Flavorful Culinary Experiences to Indulge in this Spring
Dutch Bros Expands Into Florida Taking Aim At U.S. Coffee Giants
Looking Toward A Competitive Future And A Recipe For Retail Success
Supermarkets Lead On Food And Nutrition Initiatives, Study Suggests
How to spend a sun-drenched holiday in Zante

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *