The silly tradition to drink pink wine only in summer is dead or dying, and that’s a good thing.When you taste the wonderful variety of rosé wines available, you realize that they can be as serious or as frivolous as any red or white, and they can spark a fine dinner as easily as they can fun up a picnic.
In 2014, Katie Kelly Bell put to rest the other rosé myth: that it’s for girls only. Later articles in print and online confirmed Ms. Bell’s prescience.
Recently, the approximate 2600 year-old—and modern-day undisputed rosé leader—Provence wine region, issued a press release claiming in the past twelve years, “… exports of rosé wines from Provence to the United States have grown by double digits.” The release also informed in 2015,pink wine increased in sales by nearly 60 percent over 2014, with a nearly 75 percent increase in value to the Provence wine coffers. Estimates are that half of the French rosé sold in America comes from Provence, which accounts for nearly 43 percent of the dollar value of French pink wine, and about 30 percent of the volume of all imported pink wine.
Why do we drink French rosé?
You might remember—then again, you might be too young to remember—the mostly insipid White Zinfandel wines that came out of California in the 1980s. But before then, in the mid 1940s, Frank Schoenmaker gave the country Almaden Vineyards’ Grenache Rosé, an off-dry wine (about 1.5 percent residual sugar) that in fact served as the country’s first mass-marketed varietal wine success. Schoenmaker knew what he was doing: the red Grenache grape’s natural flavors and tannic intensity made it a preferred variety for rosé across Europe. Almaden’s Grenache Rosé was immediately popular–and then it wasn’t.
Today’s pink wine may have become a success in part because American wine consumers discovered that Provencal rosé is far from insipid—and largely far from sweet. The method for its production includes a period of contact with the skins of red grapes before bleeding off or pressing the juice; it results in more flavor and overall structure in what appears by its color to be a light wine.
Will American wine producers take Provence’s success lying down?
Continue reading: Forbes