Rose’ [“rose-ay”] just might be the politician of the wine world and a popular one at that. I have a passion for rose’ and I’m not alone. Every year, myself and others like me look forward to the season’s new releases of rose’ wines, specifically from France.
These wines speak of their terroir so gracefully. I think I also enjoy them because of the dichotomy of this wine. It’s not red and it’s not white. What is it exactly? It suits us all. It unites all wine drinkers like a good politician. I find it to be very patriotic, for it stands for freedom in winemaking and freedom in drinking. Rose’ allows no particular classification such as red and white define it. It is pink! It’s like the third party of wine.
Rose’ is what red wine tastes like when it is made like a white wine. The grapes and the blending percentages are identical from red to rose’. Winemakers allow skin contact with the grape just long enough for a certain amount of color in the wine from bright fuscia to pale pink. Much like some politicians, a rose’ can range from conservatively pale pink to liberal, brash magenta. There are several methods from gently pressing the grapes to letting the weight of the grapes press grapes down (Saignee’ method), to limited maceration where the juice rests on its skins in a tank for 2-20 hours. All to reach a desired color and profile.
This wine is a red wine that morphed itself into a wine for drinking all year ’round. It had a wardrobe change, walked out as a whole other wine, and folks still love it. We clamor for more, although it seemingly has no true identity. Only a good politician could pull this off.
I found a passion for this wine and a desire to learn more after spending several days in the South of France in September 2006 driving around visiting different towns. This area holds many Roman ruins and establishments from the Crusades. The wines from this region illustrate the stories of the region beautifully.
Chateaus have been making wine in areas around the French Southern coast since the Middle Ages. Many towns reside enclosed by stone walls on top of hills. Pomegranate tree lined cobblestone walkways where chariots passed. Yellowing leaves on the grapevines in the rolling hills of vineyards. Chateaus, farms and flowers and food, lots of ruins and lots of wine. In the grocery store there were entire aisles dedicated to rose’… A veritable wall of gorgeousness on either side of me. My journey had begun and I had no idea at the time of the significance. Probably because my experience with rose’ had been so limited up until this time. I had finally joined the legion of rose’ drinkers.
Rose’ builds a bridge of commonality for wine drinkers. No one doesn’t like rose’. She promises Freedom and delivery from a boring existence. She gives everyone what they want. She makes the people smile. Rose’ is a winning choice for Fourth of July as we celebrate our hard fought freedom. And the country with whom we share a July celebration of freedom is France. Rose’ is our winning candidate in 2016.