Tickled Pink: Rosé All Day, The Sequel – 3 ways to Rosé

Posted on May 20, 2015

Hellloooooooo, Wine Seekers! Lo & Tee, back ‘atcha…tackling our way through the mighty world of Rosé, one bottle at a time. This week, to help us along on our journey, we brought along our lightly colored, slightly sweet and TOTALLY yummy friend, 2014 Pascal Jolivet Rosé (so good, she’s sold out on Wine.com!) for the journey.


Isn’t she pretty?


How to Make a Rosé

Since a good Grape Girl leaves no stone unturned, no barrel unopened, no bottle uncorked when it comes to getting good information, we dug deep and quickly learned that there are 3 major ways to make a rosé: Skin Contact, Blending, and Saignée (french for ‘bleeding’).

  • Skin Contact: Sounds just like what it is, like Mother Nature’s food coloring. It’s also the most straightforward form of rosé production. Black-skinned grapes (in this case, Pinot Noir grapes) are crushed and the skins are allowed to remain in contact with the juice for a short period (1-3 days). It’s then stamped, stomped and pressed  and the skins are tossed out rather than left in contact throughout fermentation (as we learned with red wine making). The longer that the skins are left in contact with the juice, the more intense the color of the final wine. Ta Da!
  • Blending: Again, not rocket science here. Blending simply takes a complete red wine and a complete white wine and mixes the two together until the desired taste and color are met. However, most wine growing regions frown upon this form of Rosé making – it’s kinda like cheating on the test. You get the answer right, but you took a shortcut to get there. Fun fact: In France, blending is forbidden by law, except for Champagne. Even in Champagne, several high-end producers do not use this method but rather the saignée method.
  • Saignée: Our third and final process and also the way that the 2014 Pascal Jolivet Sancerre Rosé is produced. Say you’re making a red wine (Pinot Noir) and you want to up the tannin and color intensity of the wine. What to do? Saignée, of course! Just remove some of the pink juice from the must (basically stomped grapes – seeds, stems, skins and all) and let it ferment on it’s own and VOILA! A rosé is born.

There you have it, Wine Seekers. I think Biggie said it best when he rapped, “And if you don’t know, now you know.”

Play on, playa.

See you next week, when we take a peek into a Sparkling Rosé…pink AND bubbles? My cup runneth over!


Lo & Tee

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