Rosé has been on the rise in recent years, and for good reason. The stereotype of pink wine is that it’s sweet, fruity and lacking in depth. However, a better understanding of production methods and an increase in quality demand has quickly launched the style into a new age of more complex, dry and enjoyable Rosés.
Firstly, a Rosé can be made from a number of different grape varietals. Some popular styles are made from Grenache, Pinot Noir, Sangiovese, Zinfandel, Syrah and Carignane. Just as their red wine counterparts, the Rosés made from these varietals or a mix of varietals express a range of aromas and flavors. For example, Grenache Rosés tend to yield a fragrant nose with an abundance of floral aromas and a delicate palate profile while Pinot Noir Rosés can develop juicy aromas of strawberries, cherries and other red fruits complimented by a complex palate structure.
Secondly, Rosés can be produced using a few different methods: skin contact, saignée, or blending. The skin contact method is performed by crushing the grapes and allowing the dark skins a few days to remain in contact with the juice. Saignée (pronounced Son-yay) is a French term that translates to ‘bleeding’. For this method, some of the juice from the crushed grapes is allowed to ‘bleed off’ and therefore leaves the remaining juice with a higher concentration of skins allowing for more coloration. The third method, blending, is a technique of mixing white wine with some red wine. This method, however, is uncommon and even discouraged in some areas. The end result of all three methods is a beautiful pink colored wine. Experimenting with different factors such as how long the juice is in contact with the skins, gives winemakers an opportunity to produces a range of color from light salmon pink to a darker ruby pink wine.
With such diversity and increase in quality, Rosé wines are flying off the shelves. Luckily, we were able to snag a few for your summer enjoyment. Grab a glass and discover your favorite Santa Barbara County Rosé today!