Everything's coming up Rosé
Even if you're not a wine connoisseur, you have probably noticed that with the weather having gotten warmer, more and more bottles of pink wine have hit the shelves of your local wine store and your friends might be posting photos on social media of themselves enjoying glasses of chilled, blush hued wine. Summer has come to mean rosé.
Rosé wine spent many unappreciated years in this country, but has exploded onto the scene as a popular beverage, especially during warmer months, since it is drunk at a cool, refreshing temperature.
It is part of a parody clip on Saturday Night Live called "The Rosé Zone," and Vanity Fair called it "both a symbol of, and necessity for, that luxury lifestyle Shangri-La so many are aiming for (at least by the looks of Instagram)."
Rosé's following is not limited to a certain segment of the population. Not only do you reach for it, but your in-laws and your kids probably do too. You might have even heard the moniker "brosé" referring to the frat boy-types who are fans. Unsurprisingly, rosé mania has crossed over into the kosher wine market, especially over the past three years; each year more and more kosher rosés are available.
So what is behind this wine trend? To start, rosé is easy and versatile. It is lighter than most reds and deeper than light whites. From an aesthetic perspective, it's a pretty color and photogenic.
Unlike what you might imagine, it's not made by mixing red and white wine together. Rosé also is not a variety, but can be made from any red grapes. To make rosé, a winemaker will press red grapes and then let the juice and the skins to soak together for a few days. In a process called maceration, the color from the skin will color the liquid.
"Pinot Noir and Barbera grapes for example, have a thinner skin than Cabernet Sauvignon or Syrah, therefore their skins will release less color into the juice," noted Gabriel Geller of the Royal Wine Corporation. Once the optimal color is achieved, the skins will be removed and the wine will ferment.
Since it is made from a variety of grapes around the world, the flavor can range from dry to sweet, and rosé can be still, semi-sparkling, or sparkling.
France, especially the Provence region, is the biggest producer of rosé wine, but Spain, and Portugal are also known for theirs which they call rosado. In Italy it is called rosato, and pink wine from German-speaking countries is called rosewein or roseewein. The rosé market isn't limited to Europe, however. There is excellent rosé wine from South America, the United States, and Israel.
At Gary Wartels' Skyview Wine store, the three most popular rosés are from Israel: Psagot, Jacques Capsouto, and Vitkin. Wartels also sells many bottles of rosé by Borgo Reale, Flam, Covenant, Recanati, Capcanes, and Domaine Netofa.
Once you have selected the rosé of your choice, put it in the fridge so that you can serve it cold, and don't let it sit on a shelf to get dusty. "Rosé wines should be drunk as young as possible, preferably within 1-2 years from the harvest as to enjoy their freshness and fruitiness," said Geller. "Rosé wines are not made for cellaring and will also get darker with time from the oxidation."
According to Geller, "rosé wines vary in price about as much as any other type of wine. For example, the Baron Herzog Rosé de Cabernet Sauvignon which retails for $10-12 is a delicious, off-dry and inexpensive yet very well-made wine. The amazing Château Roubine from Côtes de Provence in France or the unusual and delightful Goose Bay Blanc de Pinot Noir both can be found for about $20-25."
The selection of rosés at Skyview ranges from $10 up to $100 for a "very fine sparkling rose."
"Most are in the mid teens to mid $20s," Wartels added.
Wartels recommends serving rosé with with cheese, salads, and lighter fare.
Geller pairs his with "salads, sushi, fish, lox, bagels, cheese, chicken, turkey, chips, pickles, you name it! It’s the perfect aperitif for a BBQ. And super food friendly."