Rose Wines For Summer Sippin' - Jon Un-Corked

Rose Wines For Summer Sippin' - Jon Un-Corked


Rosé Wines For Summer Sippin' - Jon Un-Corked


Rosé has been on something of a roll...

With temperatures riding high I thought that some delicious Rosés to be enjoyed well-chilled and al fresco would be an appropriate subject for my first column. It wasn’t that long ago that many UK imbibers looked down their noses at Rosé, but they have long been popular around Europe, particularly in the Mediterranean countries. However, Rosé has been on something of a roll here over the last several years. It always surprises me that quite a few people that I encounter are reluctant to try a Rosé because of a perception that most of them are quite sweet when in truth the majority are dry to varying degrees. 


How is a Rosé wine made?...

So, how is a Rosé wine made? There are actually 3 different methods that can be employed; the simplest is quite literally adding a little red wine to some white! This technique is rather frowned upon in Europe, indeed it is not permitted in many regions, although ironically some of the most expensive Rosé, namely Champagne can be made this way. The Saignée method involves racking off some of the juice when making red wine to be made into Rosé after a short maceration and then  with the remainder being made into red. Finally, the most widely used is direct pressing in which black grapes are gently crushed with the juice remaining in contact with the skins until the desired colour has been acquired.


If dry is your thing...

If dry is your thing, then Provence in Southern France is a great place to start and is currently enjoying a real surge in popularity. This is partially down to the success of Ch. d’Esclans extremely ‘Insta’ friendly Whispering Angel but there are plenty of alternatives out there, some better and plenty that are less expensive! These wines are invariably blended from a combination of grape varieties with Grenache, Carignan, Cinsault & Syrah holding sway. There is also a commonly held belief that the paler the wine, the better the quality and Rosé from Provence is almost always very pale, however, depth of colour in a Rosé is not an arbiter of quality – there are some outstanding Rosés that are very deep in colour!

There is plenty of Rosé made in other parts of France too; the Languedoc is quite prolific as is the Rhône Valley with the wines of Lirac well worth seeking out. Rosé Sancerre is made from Pinot Noir and is a little more niche but definitely enjoys its share of devotees.

IMHO, some of the best Rosé, or should I say Rosado is from Spain – Rioja produces some lovely dry but fruity wines usually from Tempranillo often with a little Garnacha. Historically, Navarra was where most Rosado was made but these wines don’t get imported to the UK as much as they used to, whereas Catalunya is an increasingly excellent source with some wonderful dry wines, with varying degrees of fruitiness coming through. 


So, on to some recommendations…


AIX Vin de Provence 2020  - Provence, France

This Dutch-owned 75-hectare Estate had the temerity to patent the name of the sub-zone of Provence in which they are based… didn’t really endear them to their neighbours! Their wine however is excellent – a blend of Grenache, Syrah & Cinsault that is bone-dry, elegant & typically pale. Well-balanced & refreshing as a freshly cut Watermelon! 

Aix Rose Provence FR0264


Cote Mas Rosé 2020 - Vin de Pays, France

This was originally conceived as a range of up-market ‘house’ wines for Jean-Claude Mas to serve to guests at his own, on-site bistro at their Pézenas HQ deep in the Languedoc. However, they were so good that they were put on general release and this is now one of our most popular Rosés. Also a blend of Grenache, Cinsault & Syrah, this is dry but more fruity than a Provençal Rosé. An attractive coral pink in colour with aromas of ripe cherry & red berries. 

Cote Mas Rose FR0110



Eguren Ugarte Rioja Rosado 2020 - Rioja, Spain

This medium-sized, family-owned and run Bodega just outside Laguardia in the Rioja Alavesa produces a diverse range including this delicious Rosado. It is 100% Tempranillo & by Spanish standards really rather pale! It was cold fermented to retain the delightful wild strawberry and red berry aromas with the palate dry but fruit-driven. 

Eguren Ugarte Rosado SP0047



Afrikan Ridge Rosé NV - Breedekloof, South Africa

The latest addition to the ever-popular Afrikan Ridge range.  This off-dry rosé is sourced from our friends at Gravel Junction, with the grapes coming from the Mount Vernon winery situated in the picturesque village of Klapmuts. This is an example of a blended rosé, predominantly Chenin Blanc, complemented by Merlot grapes. Merlot gives the wine a lovely pink colour, juicy berry flavours and provides a silky smooth finish. Unlike its aforementioned peers, it boasts a less serious and naturally sweeter style, making it the sort of wine you can add an ice cube to or use in a cocktail. I like to blend it with frozen fruit and make a Frosé (Frozen Rosé) which is the perfect treat for when you want to cool down and unwind. Excellent for hot summer days.

Afrikan Ridge Rose mock up web


If you are interested in any of the aforementioned wines or would like to discuss your wine requirements with our wonderful team, simply email or give us a call on 01524 737 100.



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This is Bordeaux in South-West France in case you were wondering! Yes, the home of ‘Claret’ is where some of the most desirable (and subsequently expensive) wines are to be found. It’s easy to assume that the ‘classed growths’ as ordained in the 1855 classification is what it is all about and for sure, there are dozens of venerable properties following on the coat tails of the ‘big five’ – Chateaux Haut Brion, Lafite, Latour, Margaux and Mouton-Rothschild along with a hand full of stellar properties on the ‘Right Bank’ such as Cheval Blanc and Pétrus. It’s easy to get sucked into the intrigue and mystique when you will have to shell out north of £3k for a single bottle of 1982 Ch. Lafite, however, these ‘investment grade’ wines only represent a tiny proportion of the regions output. For most of us mere mortals, Bordeaux has plenty of delicious wine to offer at considerably more modest prices!