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Best Rose Wine

If the only rose you've ever tried is White Zinfandel, you're missing out on a world full of excellent wines. There's a lot of variation when it comes to rose wine, so no matter what your tastes, you're sure to find something that's up your alley. Rose can be sweet or dry, one-note or complex, flat or bubbly. In fact, some of the best Champagnes are roses made from Pinot Noir grapes.

Rose can be made in a number of different ways, but the vast majority of rose is made from 100% red wine grapes. Rose wine is sometimes made by fermenting the wine on the skins for anywhere from a day to a couple of weeks to get its color. Once the correct color is achieved, it’s taken off the skins so that it doesn't turn into red wine. Alternatively, rose can be "bled" from red wines by siphoning off the lighter wine at the top of the fermentation vat. Finally, rose can be produced by blending white and red wines, though this method isn't commonly used and produces inferior quality wine.

Though California White Zinfandel is the most popular style of rose in the New World, rose is also commonly enjoyed in France. French roses are usually dry and floral and are very popular in the summer months. Of course, rose is made wherever winemakers put down roots from Spain to South Africa to New Zealand. With so many different rose wines to try, this is one style that definitely worth trying.

Caves D'Esclans Whispering Angel

Chateau d'Esclans Whispering Angel

An incredible wine in the tradition of classical dry French roses, Chateau d'Esclans Whispering Angel is our top pick for higher-end rose. This wine is made from Grenache that's skillfully blended with Vermentino, Syrah, Cinsault, and Tibouren. Though this wine is a blend of white and red varietals, the pink color doesn't come from the blending white and red wines but rather from leaving the wine on the dark colored Grenache skins for a short time. In terms of flavor, this wine is intense and complex. It shows off notes of wild berries, cherry, peach, and strawberry without a hint of sweetness. It's dry from start to finish, and isn't overly acidic, qualities that make it a refreshing wine that's ideal on a summer evening.

Chateau Hermitage Saint-Martin Cotes de Provence Rose.jpg

Chateau Hermitage Saint-Martin Rose

Chateau Hermitage Saint-Martin Rose is an award-winning wine hailing from Cotes de Provence, a French appellation known for making some of the world's best rose wines. Dark in color for a French rose, this wine is a deep peach with dark pink tones that are nearly purple. It's made from Tibouren, Carignan, and Grenache, all of which are flavorful grapes that lend this wine complex aromas of grapefruit, strawberry, and fresh cut flowers. The flavor profile has fruity notes of blackberry, apricot, and tropical fruit, as well as floral notes of pansy, and acidic notes of citrus fruit, making it a well-balanced wine that can be enjoyed as an off-dry aperitif or as an accompaniment to a rich French meal.

Barnard Griffin Rose of Sangiovese.jpg

Barnard Griffin Rose of Sangiovese

A winner of numerous gold medals, our favorite rose for under $20 is Barnard Griffin Rose of Sangiovese. This wine has an expressive nose with rich aromas of strawberry and tangerine, and a complex palate with notes of red cherry, candied orange, and raspberry. The finish is long and dry, balancing out the fruity flavors perfectly with lots of bright acidity. Though it's made in the Columbia Valley, this wine is made from a classic Italian varietal. Sangiovese is usually used to make a flavorful, fruit forward red wine but the grape also makes an excellent rose since it's naturally acidic and, despite its nearly black color, rather light in flavor.

Tablas Creek Patelin de Tablas Rose.jpg

Tablas Creek Patelin de Tablas Rose

Though better known for their high end rose wine, Tablas Creek also makes an incredible rose for under $20. Their Patelin de Tablas Rose is made from three classic Rhone varietals, Mourvedre, Grenache, and Counoise. These three grapes give the wine plenty of complexity. You'll notice notes of strawberry floating on top of dark berry flavors that are accented by spice and plenty of acidity. Since the grapes are grown in limestone-rich soil, there's also a bit of minerality that helps this wine pair beautifully with shellfish.

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