When looking at rosé, one thing that does get talked about quite a lot is the end colour of the wine, and rightfully so — as consumers, we often do buy with our eyes. While a rosé can range from a bright, rosy colour to almost translucent pale orange with a bit of blush, in the current market, there’s a huge move towards rosés that are light and dry in style.
To produce paler style of rosé, the winemaker needs to think about the wine from the stage of planting and growing the grapes and everything along the way. It is no longer acceptable to make a rosé from unwanted red grapes. To produce a paler style rosé, the grapes are often picked earlier, when the skins haven’t yet developed as much saturation, but it is a fine line between balancing the skin colour and the ripeness and acidity levels of the grapes. Therefore, paler styles require more skill and careful planning, so they are not the cheapest, but they are attributed to the fine wine experiences.
UP TO TASTE!
2021 DOMINIQUE PORTET FONTAINE ROSE
If you like Provence style rosé and as equally enjoy Australian interpretations of them, then this is probably the best out there for you. Dominique is a ninth generation winemaker from south-west France who settled in the Yarra Valley and produces wines with a unique firsthand knowledge of traditional winemaking philosophies. It’s a pretty colour, salmon pink, and very inviting. For the aromas, picture yourself cutting fresh strawberries, peach and nectarine for your morning fruit brekky. The palate is fresh, zesty, long and to the point. This is like taking all the best of Provence style and delivering in one enjoyable rosé.
2021 BIRD IN HAND SPARKLING
Those of you who have looked into my past will know that this wine played a very significant role in my life and to this day it is one of my favourite wines. Colour extraction is very minimal here — these guys literally drain the press as they load it, releasing most of the juice naturally before giving it a gentle squeeze. The result is simply stunning: salmon pink in colour with gentle and fine perlage. The aroma of strawberry and cherry with a bit of cream on top is a divine combination. The palate is crisp and fresh as a sunny spring morning in the Adelaide Hills. This wine is perfect to get your senses excited before a nice lunch or dinner.
2021 PRIMO ESTATE SANGIOVESE ROASTO, MCLAREN VALE
Joe Grilli, Primo Estate’s winemaker, is a talented veteran of the Australian wine industry with rich Italian heritage and a unique skill of blending innovative grape growing and winemaking with traditional Italian philosophies. This rosé, or rosato, is true to the Italian style. After harvesting Sangiovese at just the right time, these grapes are then left on skin for 10–15 hours before continuing with the process. This one is vibrant salmon pink in colour, with a vast range of aromas. It has it all, strawberries, peach, slightly creamy and a gentle rosé perfume. The palate has a soft line of berry flavour with savoury texture and dry finish. This is where the extra time on skins plays a crucial part making this wine ideal for richer seafood or grilled white meat dishes.