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Winemaker’s Roundtable: Five Facts About… Rosé

Monday, April 23rd, 2012

Springtime is here and Mother’s Day is around the corner – is there a better time to start drinking rosé ?  Not a big fan, you say?  Well, rest assured it has come along way from the “blush” craze of the 1970′s and ’80′s.  Why don’t you give it another try with some of Southern California’s local grapes?  And in the meantime, you can impress your wine-loving friends with the following five fun facts about rosé  –

1.   Rosé has long been the signature wine of Provence, a region in the south of France that makes this “white” wine from red grapes — primarily Grenache.
2.   There are three methods to produce rosé:

    • the “skin contact” method, in which red grapes are crushed and the skins are allowed to remain in contact with the juice for a short period to impart color and flavor (the longer that the skins are left in contact with the juice, the more intense the color of the final wine.)
    • the “saignee” method, in which some of the juice used to produce red wine is “bled” from the tank shortly after crushing; this gives the final red wine more intensity
    • the “blending” method, which is rarely used and typically frowned upon, but involves simply blending a little red wine with white wine

3.   Rosé wines can be made still, semi-sparkling or sparkling.
4.   Rosé wine is made in a range of colors, from a pale orange to a vivid near-purple, depending on the grapes, additives and wine making techniques.
5.   American “blush” wines of the 70′s and 80′s were on the sweet side but the pendulum is now swinging back towards a drier, more traditional Provencal style made with grapes like Syrah, Grenache, and Carignan.

Temecula Valley wine country rosés to try:

 

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