Should You Explore More than One Shade of Rosé This Summer?

by JJ Buckley Fine Wines

Glasses of rose wine on an elegant dinner table.

When you typically think of wines, what first comes to mind? There’s a good chance you initially thought about either a red or a white wine. While many wine enthusiasts enjoy quality red and white wines all year round, there’s another type to keep in mind as summer gets underway – and that’s rosé.

Rosé wines aren’t quite reds, nor are they whites. These "pink" wines come in many, many shades, ranging from pale salmon, to pinkish-yellow to darker, almost red wine hues. This is because different winemakers use different grape varietals to produce rosé wines, and the color is also affected by the length of time the skins of the grapes remain in contact with the juice.

In short, there’s a broad range of rosé wines to explore. The best part is, you have the whole summer (and every other season of the year) to get adventurous and try multiple varieties and styles.

Why Should You Try Different Shades of Rosé Wine?

You’re missing out if you’re only drinking one or two particular rosé wines. There are so many incredible versions, each with unique characteristics.

Every shade tells you a bit about the wine before you even take a sip (or before you inhale its aroma). For starters, the color of the wine gives an indication of what grapes it was created from. It also provides some insight into the aromas and flavors you can expect to experience. For instance, a light rosé from Provence will likely be dry and offer deliciously bright, fruity flavors. A darker pinot noir  rosé, on the other hand, might be heartier with notes of dark stone fruits and berries.

In essence, every shade of rosé provides a unique experience. They broaden your horizons and expand your palate, so there's no reason to stick to just one even if it’s your favorite. You can choose from a multitude of varieties and shades of rosé to create the perfect pairing for any meal or gathering.

Types of Rosé Wines

When it comes to rosé, the most well-known are the pale pink versions from Provence. Between its French heritage and familiarity to consumers around the world, these wines tend to get the most attention. But they’re far from the only options. There are numerous high-quality rosés out there in a range of colors.

Dry vs. Sweet Rosé

The most common style of rosé is dry, wines that have little to no residual sugar. You can find some sweet varieties, too, which winemakers create by not fermenting all of the sugars in the juice to alcohol.

Pale vs. Dark Rosé

You may have heard that the palest rosé wines — particularly those from Provence — are the highest-quality rosés available. While there’s no denying these wines are superb, that doesn’t mean that every other shade is somehow of a lower-quality. Winemakers use a variety of grapes to create their rosés and they leave the skins on for varying amounts of time.

Common Types of Rosés

As we keep saying, there are various types of rosé wines. Many winemakers use the same grapes to make rosé that they use to make their red wines. The difference is in the production method. Here are some of the common types of rosé wine for summer:

  • Provence (produced from a blend of regional grape varieties, such as grenache, cinsault, and mourvedre)
  • Zinfandel (also known as "white" zinfandel, this style tends towards the sweet side).
  • Grenache
  • Sangiovese
  • Pinot Noir
  • Cabernet Sauvignon
  • Syrah
  • Tavel (produced from a blend of regional grape varieties, such as grenache, syrah, cinsault and mourvedre)

Again, each shade offers different flavors that can pair well with different types of food. If you’re planning a family reunion, a dinner party or cookout, or simply a quiet evening on the porch, there’s the perfect rosé waiting just for you.

Tips for Enjoying a Rosé This Summer

Now we have some tips that will help you enjoy every rosé wine you sample this summer to the fullest:

How to Store Your Wine Until You’re Ready to Drink It

Like most other wines, you should store rosé wines at between 55° and 59° Fahrenheit. A dark closet or basement is ideal, particularly if the area doesn’t see much activity. Constantly introducing light or causing temperature fluctuations may harm the liquid inside the bottle.

Here’s a bonus tip: While some wines can age for several years, most rosés can’t. You’ll want to drink them within a year of when they’re released. And, after you open the bottle, you can store it corked in the refrigerator for up to a week.

The Best Glasses to Use

When it comes to choosing the best glassware for serving rosé wine, you’ll want to select something with a wide bowl. Glasses similar to what you use for red wines like a pinot noir are ideal. They let you capture the aromas of the wine so that you can inhale them before taking a sip.

The Ideal Serving Temperature for Your Rosé

Finally, you’ll want to consider the temperature of the wine before you serve it. For rosé wines, the ideal serving temperature is just slightly lower than the storage temperature. For optimal enjoyment, chill the wine to between 44° and 55° Fahrenheit. If the wine is too cold, it will mute the complexity and flavors.

Get Adventurous This Summer with Many Shades of Rosé Wine

Rosé wines typically get the most attention during the summer. They’re perfect for chilling slightly, offering you something refreshing to drink on warm days or nights. And, you don’t have to (nor should you) stick to a single shade. By getting adventurous and expanding your palate, you’ll open yourself up to a whole new world of pairing options that can help you take your summer gatherings from good to incredible.

Are you looking for great rosé wines to pair with your summertime meals and gatherings? Check out the selection online at JJ Buckley Fine Wines. We have a broad selection of rosés and other wines to fit all of your occasions. For help finding the perfect complement to your special events or activities, our professional wine specialists are here to provide you with quality recommendations. For all of your wine needs, visit JJ Buckley Fine Wines today.