A burgeoning category within any modern-day wine store, Rosé is in fact one of the oldest types of wine around. While there is some conjecture around the history of where the first vineyard produced Rosé – some say ancient Greece, others’ ancient Rome, and some will say Provence in France. When it was actually first labelled is anyone’s guess, but it is highly likely that many of the earliest wines resembled the blush-like colour of a Rosé rather than today’s modern Reds. Today’s sophisticated wine producing techniques simply weren’t available in ancient wine making times. Both white and red grapes were often pressed by hand and foot as soon as they were harvested creating a lighter pigmentation.
Named after the soft pink of its floral name-sake it is also known as Rosado in Spanish and Portuguese speaking countries, and Rosato in Italy. Today’s wine-making techniques still incorporates the complexion of both grape skins but not enough to be categorised officially as Red wine.
France is by far the biggest Rosé wine producing country, followed by Spain and Italy. New World countries such as USA, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa are also rapidly growing.
So what to pair with Rosé? This is an incredibly versatile, food-friendly wine. It is ideal as an alfresco apéritif, but equally as good when enjoyed with a range of flavourful dishes including:
- Light Dry Rosés much like Pinot Grigio are perfect to drink in Spring and Summer when the weather is warmer. Think light prawn salads, rice dishes and Grilled Shell fish.
- Medium Dry Rosés marry well with spicier dishes and go very well with Asian food. They also happily share palate space with unsweetened strawberries and not overly sweet desserts.
- Fruity Rosés much like Pinot Noir dance elegantly with summer seafood dishes, particularly grilled lobster, lightly seared tuna or salmon. Also white-rinded cheeses like Brie go well.
- Full bodies Rosés are a match made in heaven with bolder flavours such as curries and roasted meats.
- Sparkling Rosés sing tunefully with cakes, tarts and even seafood such as oysters, prawns and lobsters.
Here’s 3 of our Top Picks for the upcoming Season!
Kim Crawford Rosé
From Marlborough in New Zealand this Rosé has a lively bouquet, brimming with bright berry and tropical fruit. The palate is soft and luscious, with a refreshing, richly fruited body. Ideal as an apéritif or summer sipper, this easy-drinking wine also pairs perfectly with lighter salads and other fayre. 2017.
Oyster Bay Rosé
Oyster Bay’s cool climate Marlborough Rosé exudes summer cherry and fragrant blossom notes with a burst of red berries and a lively citrus zest. Full-bodied with strong vibrant redberry and plum flavours, dry and persistent. Perfect with the fresh, tangy, spicy and citrus flavours of Thai cuisine. 2017.
Tempus Two Rosé
From the Hunter Valley, this is a fresh and racy Rosé with intense flavours, reflective of its aromatics. This wine has a clean crisp finish. Hints of fresh strawberries and green melon are well represented, with some herbaceousness. Best with Summer salad dishes, barbequed prawns, Atlantic salmon and antipasto. 2017.