How is Rosé Wine Made?

When you’ve finished watching the video below, don’t forget to download my rosé wine guide!

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The cutest, pinkest, yummiest wine!

So how TOTES ADORBES is rosé?! It’s honestly the tastiest, fruitiest, ‘if-pretty-had-a-taste’ist wine out there and I LOVE IT.

two glasses of rose wine

I can’t really think of anything better than chillaxing on a warm summer’s day with a bottle of rosé on a French terrace overlooking the Seine. Okay, well, maybe being on a boat IN the Seine would be better or at least comparable. But yeah… there is seriously nothing better than that in ALL OF LIFE.

Rosé is so pink and cute that I once served a MAGNUM sized bottle to TEENY TINY Emma Bunton of the Spice Girls! Obviously, Baby Spice likes a good rosé–it’s pink, she’s pink, duh. But, overall, that nightclub in London was weird and I’m glad I’m no longer in my 20’s so… moving on…

A rosé misconception

Rosé is not sweet. Most of them have literally NO residual sugars. So unless you’re happy to always stick with White Zinfandel, rosés are going to be dry and refreshing.

In general, if you like richer, more flavourful wines, stick with darker roses. If you’re more of a delicate, floral note kind of wine drinker, stick with paler ones. Both are gorgeous.

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Grapes used in rosé

To be honest, any grape can be used to make rosé, but the most common two are the Grenache or the Garnacha grape (mainly grown in Southern France and Spain). The grapes are harvested and blended with other local grapes. You can also find lovely Pinot Noir rosés there as well. In the Loire region of France, you can find beautiful Cabernet Franc rosés, and in Italy, wineries use local grapes to make their rosatos.

The making method

There are four different ways that wineries make rosé.

  • The direct pressing of red grapes – This created the palest rosé wines which are known as ‘vin gris’ which means ‘grey wine’ in French.
  • Skin contact maceration – This is a process in which red grapes are pressed and the juice is left to sit in the gunk of the grapes until it begins to soak up color from the grapes’ skin. The wine maker will filter out the juice when they are happy with the pigment of the wine.

These two methods are prefered in Provence, the home of fancy rosé, in the south of France.

  • The bleeding method or ‘saignee’ in French – This method is best explained as the process that occurs when the wine maker syphons out juice at the beginning of maceration in order to concentrate it. This is more of a wine byproduct, but it can be lovely.
  • Blending – This is when the wine maker combines white wine with a drop of red wine. The vast majority of pink Champagne is made in this way, but the general process is uncommon.

Please comment if you have any other questions about rosé…. I don’t know about you, but I’m about to pop open a bottle after all this talk of grapes, French vinyards, and hot summer days. I may even pop in a couple of ice cubes.

Download my rosé wine guide here.

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rose wine in glasses