Dare to go pink!
Good rosés are pale. Rosé isn’t really wine. Rosé or Rossi? Which rosé works best with strawberry soup, clafoutis, striped mullet, fraise tagada strawberry sweets...? What is a blush wine? Rosés on ice and rosés for the swimming pool. What is the right price for a rosé? Is rosé effeminate? What should I do with a mature rosé? Rosé rankings. Rosé aromas. Sparkling rosés. Star rosés and rosés for the stars. Rosé is light! Rosé with grapefruit. Rosé dessert wines...
With the return of spring and a probable rise in temperatures, we are launching a new series aimed at answering all your questions about rosé. Rosé is the only wine still growing in consumption terms in France, which is the leading consumer and producer of rosé wine worldwide.
Send us your questions and we will answer them over the coming weeks.
A whole spectrum
Nowadays, virtually all grapes varieties used to make wine have white flesh. The pigments contained in the skins of black (or greyish-blue) grapes impart a little colour to the wine – adding colouring is prohibited. But there is no legal, universal definition of rosé.
Where does white wine stop and slightly pale red start? This is up to the wine grower to decide. In Bordeaux, a distinction is thus made between rosé ‘clairet’ and light red ‘claret’.
However, some French appellations require at least some colour intensity. In fact, depending on the appellation, the expectation is that the wines will sport a particular colour. Hence, rosés from the Rhone tend to be more deeply-coloured than those from Provence.
Colour and quality
Very often, the paler the rosé, the easier it is to sell. However, unlike the ‘belles’ of yesteryear, whiteness is not necessarily a sign of pedigree. There are some excellent, deeply-coloured rosés – have you tried Tavel for instance? Similarly, some rosés can be extremely light-coloured – charcoal filters can remove colour – and also occasionally, extremely insipid.
So colour is not necessarily a decisive factor, except if it reveals that the wine is past its peak. If the wine has very little colour and is a little yellow-grey with very few highlights, then it is over the hill. With experience, this fault can be detected by looking at bottles along the wine aisles in stores.
A beautiful colour always gets the taste buds salivating. To properly savour a rosé, a translucent glass, without too many patterns and no scratches, that has been washed well and has no lime scale marks is highly recommended, as is a white tablecloth.