Rose wine is a category that is used to describe any wines that aren’t quite red. The tincture of rose wines can vary from deep to pale pink, and there are many different types of rose wine out there – each with its own distinct flavor.
If you want a quick primer on the different types of rose wine and what they’re like, here’s what you need to know:
- Grenache is a fruity, dry rose wine that is ruby red. Its flavor profile includes strawberry, hibiscus, allspice, and orange. In general Grenache rose is best served cold to accentuate its zesty flavor.
- Sangiovese is a fruity, dry rose wine that is copper red. Its flavor profile includes yellow peach, strawberry, rose, and green melon. Some Sangiovese rose wines can have a slightly bitter aftertaste, and most are best served cold.
- Syrah is a more savory, dry rose wine that is ruby red. It contains a hints of white pepper, green olives, peach skin, strawberries, and cherries. As a rule it is best to serve Syrah chilled, but above fridge temperature.
- Mourvedre is a fruity and floral, dry rose wine that has a pale coral color. It has notes of violets and rose petals alongside cherries, red plums, and other herbs. Compared to other rose wines it is rounder and more full-bodied.
- Pinot Noir is an iconic fruity and delicate, dry rose wine that is pale pink. It has hints of raspberries, strawberries, crab apple, and watermelon. Typically this rose has a cool, crisp and dry taste with soft and subtle flavors.
- Zinfandel is a soft and sweet rose wine that is ruby red and often low on alcohol. It is known for its blend of fruity flavors including strawberries, pineapples, pears, lemons, and so on.
- Pink Moscato is a sweet rose with a ruby-pink color. It resembles a classic Moscato yet has a dollop of merlot and some notes of apricots, peaches, oranges, raspberries, and cherries. Some pink Moscatos may even taste of vanilla, honeysuckle, or caramel.
- Tavel Rose varies from light salmon to ruby pink and is a savory, rich, and unusually dry rose wine. Its flavor profile consists of summer fruit and subtle hints of spices that in time age into rich nutty notes.
- Cabernet Sauvignon Rose has a deep ruby-red color and is a savory and dry rose wine. Its flavor is close to that of red-wine with green bell pepper, cherry sauce, black currant, and pepper spice.
- Tempranillo Rose is a savory, dry rose wine that is pale pink in color. It normally has notes of watermelon, green peppercorn, and strawberries. Some Tempranillo rose wines may blend in Grenache to give it a hint of floral flavors.
- Provence Rose is a fruity, lean, and dry rose wine that is pale pink. It is normally a blend of Grenache, Syrah, Mourvedre, and Cinsault and has distinct notes of strawberries, watermelon, and rose petals.
As you may have noticed, although people tend to assume that rose wines are sweet due to their color – nothing could be further from the truth. As a matter of fact the majority of rose wines are actually dry wines, and have fruity, floral, or savory profiles.
One of the reasons why rose wine is so attractive is that it is extremely versatile and pairs well with many different types of food. It doesn’t matter if you’re eating vegetables, white meat, red meat or looking for a picnic, barbeque, or beach wine – a good rose wine will definitely manage to fit well regardless of the occasion and circumstances.