The varying shades of pink Rosé wines sometimes give the impression they are not bold or strong enough. Some of us are thinking Rosé wines are only for the ladies who lunch crowd, but don’t be fooled.
These wines are light and refreshing like a white wine and still have qualities of a red wine making them perfect for the upcoming season of entertaining.
Rosé wines are made from many different grape varieties. For example, if you enjoy drinking Merlot you can find Rosé Merlot. Well, for that matter you can find a Rosé style in many popular red wine varieties such as Pinot Noir, Zinfandel, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Cabernet Franc, Tempranillo and also Montepulciano and Sangiovese, two of my favorite Italian varieties.
What makes these red varietals turn into pink wines is the wine-making methods. To make it simple, quality Rosé wines are produced using the saignée method. The word saignée in French translates to “bleed” – translate that to when the color from the skins bleed into the grape juice.
This wine-making method is considered the gentlest and the best way to produce quality Rosé wines. When the grapes are harvested and crushed, the skins are kept in the juice for a limited time (until the winemaker decides when the juice is the right color), then the skins are removed from the grape juice and fermentation continues.
So now that we know how Rosé wines get their color, or lack thereof, it’s time to go out and pick up your favorite variety for your spring and summer entertaining.
Rosé wines are light to medium-body wines that are very food friendly. They have the acidity and mild tannins that will be the match for all your favorite summer foods — from salads to seafood and all the way to dessert.
With the various styles of Rosé to choose, from dry and sparkling and lightly sweet to sweet, there is a Rosé style for every spring and summer gathering.
Serve Rosé wines well chilled. During the hot summer months keep the bottles chilled in a cooler tucked in the shade and filled with half water and half ice. This will keep the wine at a perfect temperature for several hours.