It’s easy to be enamored by Rosé wine, especially this time of year. The color and name alone showers with romance, but there is much more to this refreshing pink drink. Rosé is a versatile wine. It can be made from numerous varieties and depending on region and production methods, can span various pink hues and expressions in aroma and flavor.
Rosé is made from red grapes. The lightness is color is due to a shorter maceration period, where the wine spends just a few hours on the grape skins, versus weeks at a time for a red wine. The winemaker has control over the duration of the maceration, which ultimately determines the color and tannin that is extracted from the grape skins.
Let’s explore a few of my favorite Rosé wines, including the varietal, region and flavor profile that showcases the uniqueness in each bottle. The goal is to find one that piques your interest that you can share with your loved one(s) this Valentine’s Day…or any other day of the year, for that matter.
Starting with a Rosé from Côtes de Provence, a region known for producing exceptional rosé. This H&B really is a perfect everyday rosé. The 2020 vintage is a blend of Grenache, Cinsault and Vermentino. The grapes come from multiple vineyards of Provence, each contributing inimitable characteristics to the wine. Notes of white cherry, citrus, minerality and spice will charm the senses. Fresh and crisp on the palate with a light lingering finish. Although this is a wine you can drink on its own, I’d recommend pairing with tacos, roasted vegetables or any spicy dishes.
Pinot Noir is a popular choice when it comes to Rosé. I thought it would be fun to throw in a rosé from the Chehalem Mountains of Willamette Valley. This one is new to me. Watermelon and cherry pop immediately on the palate, including bursts of rose petal and lemon zest with a mineral finish. The complexity and structure of this wine makes it a great option for chicken, fish or a stacked club sandwich.
The 2020 Rodney Strong, Rosé of Pinot Noir, has been a favorite over the past few years. I like to call it my “party in a bottle” rosé. Vibrant red fruit, melon and jasmine entice the palate. The bright acidity and effervescence flirtatiously follow through with a clean, crisp finish. A go-to for any spicy dish or simply pair with goat cheese.
Lastly, a robust rosé from Beaujolais! This Georges Duboeuf is a beautiful rose petal color that will get your attention right away, but it is the intense aromatics that will keep you wanting more. Seriously, this wine was so intriguing on the nose. 100% Gamay, this rose expresses candied red fruit, tropical and citrus notes with a lush mouthful and elegant finish. This may just become a new favorite. Pair with a charcuterie board, turkey or salmon.
Rosé should be enjoyed year around but does deserve a little special attention this time of year. I hope you found one on the list interesting enough to add to your Valentine’s Day menu. Never stop exploring rose, an eclectic wine bound to surprise you. Amore!