Sure, click bait headlines are saying goodbye to rosé in favor of blue Prosecco this summer, but let’s be serious. Unlike blue Prosecco, rosé isn’t a marketing ploy (nor does it require the addition of plant-based dye), rather it’s a style of wine that’s been part of life in Provence, France since 125 BC!
Rosé’s bright, crisp, and refreshing flavors make a chilled glass ideal for any warm day, and its vibrant acidity makes it an excellent match for many foods.
Rosé isn’t going anywhere, except into your glass as temperatures start to rise. As this category continues to grow, more brands are bringing their own version of rosé to market. For that reason, we went straight to the pros to find out what rosé is in their glass this summer.
Graci’s Etna Rosato
Leslie LaRue Lamont | Manager & Sommelier at Leña Brava
In Chicago, we anxiously await the warm weather months. Warm weather means strolling along lakeshore path, sun dresses and sandals, rooftops and patios. All the patios. Every outdoor patio begs for a delicious, thirst quenching adult beverage and in my opinion, nothing satisfies quite like a “patio poundable” pink drink. I’m talking about rosé, y’all!
For me, rosé means happiness. It’s pink, it’s fun and is best enjoyed outdoors with friends. One of my favorites is a quaffable style that still offers incredible complexity. Graci, one of my favorite producers hailing from the Italian island of Sicily makes stunning wines from the mineral rich volcanic soils along the northeastern slopes of Mount Etna. Graci’s Etna Rosato is made from 100% organically grown Nerello Mascalese, an indigenous red varietal found throughout this region. Think salted watermelon, wild red raspberries with a delicate briny finish. Read: super tasty and rates high on the slammability scale. Best enjoyed with good friends, good times and grilled seafood with fresh herbs. #yeswayrosé
Find this rosé here.
Bénédicte et Stéphane Tissot, Crémant de Jura Extra Brut Rosé (NV)
Jordon Sipp | Sommelier at Vera
Rosé is delicious, and it’s impossible not to smile when you say bubbles, so why not have a bit of both? The rosé sparkler that Stephané makes is instantly enjoyable and easy to drink, but it also has layers of depth and complexity that can make every next sip worth exploring (if that’s what you’re into).
It’s the wine I want to drink with a fancy dinner on Saturday, then sip on the porch Sunday afternoon. Pick up a bottle and get some Korean BBQ for a supremely good time.
2016 Red Car Rosé
Rachel Speckan | National Wine Director at City Winery
A perennial favorite, the Red Car Rosé pops up in the early spring each year. The wine is aesthetically pleasing to the eye with post-modern color blocks, clear glass and a lithe, long neck. Crispy and quenchy, the rosé tastes of pink petals and white tea leaf, pink peppercorn and blood orange.
The [Sonoma Coast Mendocino Ridge, California] vineyards from which the grapevines spring are perched high above the Pacific Ocean on ridges riding the coastline. Briny sea salt and whipping winds, wild redwood forests and roiling sea fog bring character to the wine.
Dink this rosé all day, preferably from magnum. Perfect Pairing: Burrata drizzled with a beautiful, grassy extra virgin olive oil, spritz of lemon, and sprinkled with black sea salt – watermelon radish – watercress –
Find this rosé here.
Montenidoli Canaiuolo Toscana Rosato IGT
Steve Morgan | recovering sommelier & Midwest Regional Manager for The Sorting Table
I am spoiled because at The Sorting Table we have 4 very different roses that I get to try pretty regularly. I love the easy crushability of Triennes Rose, but like the savory quality of our Italian roses from Castello di Ama and Tiberio.
An Italian rosato I don’t represent but love and look forward to every year is Montenidoli Canaiuolo from Tuscany. Its 100% Canaiolo and while at first taste it satisfies the traditional rose drinker, there are layers that unfold with air. Notes of almond skin, orange flowers, and a saltiness make for a delicate and deep wine as well.
I would love to pair this with some traditional Tuscan fare, like wild boar salumi and pecorino toscano if at the start of a meal or even something as rich as chicken liver crostini.
Find this rosé here
Tenuta Delle Terre Nere Rosato
Elizabeth Mendez | Owner, Operator & Sommelier at Vera
Certain wines for certain seasons isn’t something most of us follow these days when it comes to drinking pink. The arrival of rosé lets us know spring has sprung, however, are all the wines ready to drink when they arrive? Not always. Enter Terre Nere Rosato, my favorite late summer and fall rosé, which has the body of a white wine and the soul of a red.
Given the home of the grapes on Mt. Etna, I love this wine with Escalivada, which is a salad of charred late summer vegetables, bonus if you add Burrata.
Find this rosé here
Bodegas Los Bermejos Listán Negro Rosado 2016
Rebekah Mahru | Wine Director of City Winery Chicago
Currently, the rosé that has really wowed me is Bodegas Los Bermejos Listán Negro Rosado 2016
Ah yes, a sommelier recommending an esoteric grape varietal from an insanely unique wine-growing region. While I may be a complete cliché by recommending this type of wine, the rosé is truly something special. The wine is just as exceptional as the place in which it’s grown. Bodegas Los Beremejos is located on the island of Lanzarote in the Canary Islands, which is actually closer to the African continent than Spain. The soil is volcanic and the winds that blow from the Sahara desert and the Atlantic are so intense that each vine is planted in small holes, or ‘hoyos’. These vineyards of ‘hoyos’ make the whole landscape of Lanzarote look like the plains of Mars (I have attached a picture of the vineyards of Beremejos from the importer for one to truly grasp its’ amazingly drastic landscape). The wine itself is bright, acidic, keeps a bit of its’ tannins, with notes of wild strawberries and savory herbs. This wine has truly become my new obsession as it is unlike any other rosé I have ever tasted.
A fantastic plus for rosé (outside of it being delicious), is it pairs with quite a lot of different foods. With this particular wine, I crave head-on prawns.
Find this rosé here
Most reccoemdnations in this article are from Europe, so if you’re interested in a highly curated selection of domestic rosé, check out our favorites here!