National Drink Rosé Day is this Saturday, June 11, 2016! So for this week’s Wine Wednesday, I thought I would share five of the top rosé wines to try this weekend.
Happy National Drink Rose Day!
This Saturday is National Drink Rosé Day! Meanwhile August 14th is International Rosé Day — so take note and celebrate again in two months!
With the rise of both temperatures and the number of wineries making incredible rosé wines, I felt like this was one national wine day I couldn’t ignore. Especially because I’ve found that so much of the country still thinks of rosé as only being that sickeningly sweet White Zinfandel that you find on the bottom shelf of the grocery store and first tried at Aunt Betty’s house because she bought cases of it at Costco in 1989 and can’t get rid of it. White Zinfandel is unfortunately still one of the best selling rosés in the United States, but I hope to change that by introducing more people to the AMAZING other types of rosé!
Bottom shelf wine, no more, folks. Today’s rosé is beautifully crafted into refined and elegant wines that are perfect for summer sipping at picnics and barbecues.
What is Rosé Wine?
The color of the wine you are drinking comes from a process called maceration. Maceration is when the juices of the grapes have contact with the skin of the grapes.
Much like nervous parents watching over their adolescent child on his/her first date, winemakers only allow the juices to have little contact with the grape skins in order to create rosé wines. Once the wine reaches a color that makes the winemaker happy, the skins are removed and then the juice ferments.
Are rosé wines sweet or dry?
Rosé wines can be either sweet or dry. It all depends on the style the winemaker chooses to make the wine.
What grape varietals are used to make the best Rosé wine?
There are many types of rosé wines. The most common varietal used to make the best rosé wine is Pinot Noir. However, I personally love a beautiful Grenache rosé, and have had some lovely Malbec rosé wines as well.
Below are three of the main styles of rosé wine you will find in the Pacific Northwest, along with five of my current favorite bottles. Try these and let me know what you think!
Pinot Noir Rosé
Color: Watermelon pink
Pair with: grilled chicken, summer salads, strawberry shortcake, sunshine and happy hour laughter
In the land of Pinot Noir, you can guess that this is the style of rosé that is most often made in the Pacific Northwest. And as a true Oregonian, it’s my favorite. I love the crisp, bright acidity that you get with this Oregon rosé wine, and the summery aromas of raspberries, strawberries, and watermelon.
I love the 2015 Durant Vineyards Pinot Noir Ava Lucia Rosé ($25). Made from 100% Pommard Pinot Noir grapes and fermented 100% in stainless steel, this is a clean, well-balanced Pinot Noir.
I also recommend trying the 2015 Stoller Dundee Hills Pinot Noir Rosé ($25). This whole cluster, stainless steel Oregon rosé wine has subtle floral aromas and is packed with flavors of watermelon and guava.
The 2015 Willamette Valley Vineyards Rosé ($24) is another Oregon Pinot Noir Rosé that I recommend. I love so many wines from Willamette Valley Vineyards, and this rosé is made with the same refined skill that all of their wines are made with.
Color: pale coral
Pair with: antipasto platter, herbed goat cheese, a big backyard party with friends against the backdrop of the setting summer sun
During a Yakima Craft Beverage Tour that I took this spring, I fell madly in love with the 2015 Gilbert Cellars Wahluke Slope Rosé ($20). First, the color is so striking. It’s not what most people think about when they think of rosé wine. It’s a stunning coral hue that looks like it belongs on an elegant ball gown. While it is a floral rosé, the Mourèdre grapes give this Washington wine some weight and hints of white pepper and grapefruit.
Cabernet Sauvignon Rosé
Color: rich ruby red
Pair with: steak and cheese crostini, bacon wrapped dates, shared secrets under the summer night sky
If you’re looking for a bolder rosé that is still bright and lively enough to enjoy on a hot summer day, try a Cabernet Sauvignon Rosé like this one from AntoLin Cellars in Yakima, Washington.
This Washington wine is like the red wine-lover’s rosé: it has more body than most rosé wines. It also has a slightly longer finish.
Which of these rosés would you like to try the most? What do you think is the top rosé wine?
I received some of these wines as media samples but have also purchased bottles on my own because I love them so. As always, all opinions and photos are my own.