Rosé wine: is it a real wine? How is it made?

Yes! It is a real wine. Unfriend everyone who told you otherwise. 

Let’s say rosé wine is white wine with colour. The colour is not fake and no, is not the result of a red and white combination! 

Rosé wine

So, how is rosé made?  

The vinification techniques for rosé wines are the same as for white wines. The only difference is the contact of the grape's skin with the juice.  

There are different methods to make rosé, the most common ones are: maceration and direct press.  

Winemakers use red or black grapes to make rosé. The grape is still white inside but the dark skin will add the colour to the wine during the maceration and pressing process. Let’s start with the direct pressing: after harvesting and sorting the  grapes, either by hand or with a machine, to get rid of the unwanted berries. The grapes will be directly pressed to extract the juice, since the skin is still in the pressing, the juice coming out will be our precious rosé.  

In the maceration process, we leave the grapes with the skin for a certain number of hours, it can be 20, 48 or more, it all depends on the intensity of the colour the winemaker wants to obtain. The longer the maceration, the darker pink we will get.  

*Keep in mind that a darker pink does not mean a sweeter wine.  

Rosé is not necessarily easier to make, on the contrary, white and rosé wines have a more complex process and are more expensive to produce. However, they are often sold for less than red wines* 

So, why do some people not take seriously rosé wine?


Well, first: nobody is perfect and second: there is lack of information regarding the process of rosé and the effort behind it – It is true, we cannot generalise when speaking about rosé wine but it is also true not all rosés are “serious”.  

Despite, its reputation as an easy to drink and inexpensive wine, there are more and more winemakers taking seriously the quality of their rosés. Especially in Provence: “The winemakers are serious about making quality wines and the results are a very diverse palate of quality rosés – some are simple ones for everyday enjoyment and others are made to be enjoyed with gastronomic meals” 1 

It also seems as if people only enjoyed rosé wine during the summer, you can definitely do so, however as Susan Manful explains in her very extensive article dedicated to rosés, the quality of these wines gets better and better and rosé can be paired with so many meals that you do not need to wait a whole year to enjoy it again. Stay tunned, we will bring you a post with the perfect meals to pair with rosé, Yes! Even in winter. 

  1. Susan Manfull/Provence Winezine, 2017/ 

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