by Jérôme Chambon
Over the past few years, rosé wine has become very popular and its consumption has increased worldwide. Rosé is indeed the perfect companion for sipping at a barbecue party or beside a swimming pool, especially during the warmer months of the year. In some markets, it has even eclipsed the sale of white wine. Rosé wine can be still or sparkling, sweet or dry and has many different styles.
The aromas and flavor of a rosé depends on the grape varieties used to produce the wine and the method of production.
Although perceived as a cheap and easy-to-drink wine, top quality rosé can be wonderful and relatively expensive. More than half the rosé wine production comes from the Provence region. Grenache is the main grape variety used to produce rosé along with Syrah, Cinsault, and Mourvèdre.
A common misconception is that rosé is made by mixing red wine with white wine. In fact, this process is forbidden in most countries. One notable exception is for the production of Champagne rosé where a portion of finished red wine is added to a white base wine.
The two main rosé methods of production are the saignée (meaning “bleeding” in French), where some juice of the red wine must is removed.
This concentrates the color and flavor of the red wine and the removed juice will compose the rosé wine.
The second method takes place over a short period of maceration of red grape varieties. The juice will be in contact with the grape skins for just a few hours, which is enough to take on a rosé color but not enough to take the flavor and color of a red wine.
The rosé produced by the saignée method has a deeper color than the one created by the maceration method.
In Thailand, rosé wine is mostly drunk by tourists and expats. However an increasing number of rosé brands and domains are imported here and the worldwide trend looks set to enter the local market in the near future.