Everyone's favorite summer sipper, rosé wine, is more popular than ever. According to a report by market research firm bw166, U.S. rosé sales increased from a mere 149,00 cases in 2010 to a jaw-dropping 2.3 million in 2020. What's the reason for that dramatic rise? Most wine experts agree that the shift can be credited to the discovery of a chic, European style of rosé: the pale, fresh, delicate wines coming from areas like the Côtes de Provence in the South of France.
These elegant French expressions allowed rosé to shake off its stodgy reputation. (Do you recall then sticky-sweet 'blush' wines like white zinfandel that previously dominated the pink wine market?). Suddenly rosé was being enjoyed everywhere, from the beach houses in the Hamptons to resorts in Miami to pool parties in the Hollywood Hills. Of course, its photogenic hue didn't hurt: it has dominated Instagram feeds of the young and beautiful. And while rosé certainly has had an aspirational image, it was at the same time extremely accessible: you don't need to know much about grape varieties, wine regions, soil types, or other geeky wine facts to feel confident striding up to the bar and ordering a glass.
We've come a long way since 2010. Now, rosé is more a classic than just a social-media trend. The pale, delicate, fresh style that brought rosé to its current status is absolutely still in fashion: the quintessential French rosé, Chateau d'Esclans' Whispering Angel, was the best-selling rosé of 2021 on the online retail platform Drizly.
Given all the acclaim and sale, it's not surprising that the rosé category is expanding. Here we outline 5 current trends in the world of rosé that you should be enjoying this summer.
How do you make a delicious, fruity, refreshing drink even better? Add bubbles, of course! The past couple of years have been challenging, and this summer, when we imbibe, expect it to be in the most festive, celebratory ways possible. Many of us will be switching out classic still rosés for sparkling wines! (Some of us have already started: Drizly reports sparkling rosé sales have grown 47 percent in the past year).
Paula Eakin, winemaker of Chateau Ste. Michelle Luxe Sparkling Rosé ($23.99, drizly.com) explains: "Sparkling rosé is the perfect spring-to-summer sipper as this wine is delicious, refreshing, and pairs well with a variety of foods from brunch to appetizers to dessert. Pink bubbles are my go-to for everyday celebrations as well as special occasions." The Chateau Ste. Michelle Luxe Sparkling Rosé has a beautiful blush tone and delicate flavors of strawberries, sweet orange, and berry jam, and a balanced combination of crisp acidity and lovely fine bubbles. Sign us up!
One of our favorite rosé Champagnes is G.H. Mumm Grand Cordon Rosé ($55, mumm.com). National Ambassador G.H.Mumm Elise Cordell agrees that sparkling rosé has all the quintessential summer vibes wine lovers are looking for. "Each sip tastes like summer, delivering flavors of fragrant seasonal fruits and a long, bright finish, balanced by the succulent ripeness of red berries. Grand Cordon Rosé evokes all of the summer senses that we wait for all year long."
Rosé has evolved from a poolside pleasure into a sophisticated cocktail ingredient. We predicted that 2022 would be the Year of the Spritz, and so far, that seems to be an accurate call: rosé bubbles are simply outstanding in a spritz and take it to the next level. Expect to see more of a trend that sprouted a couple of summers ago: frosé! Whether that's being made in a slushie machine at an outdoor bar or in your own blender with frozen rosé cubes, this trend quickly became a summer classic.
You could whip up a rosé punch, or a rosé sangria, which are great options for hosting a crowd. There are even great options for rosé-flavored vodka: try Effen Rosé Vodka ($18, effenvodka.com), which is floral and lightly fruity with notes of honey and vanilla.
Finally, to keep it simple, you can fill your summer cooler with Croft Pink Tonic cans ($16 for 4 pack, croftpink.com). This is a blend of the first rosé port combined with refreshing tonic, it's a juicy take on the chic port tonic cocktail that's been a craze throughout Europe. Since it's ready to drink, there is no simpler summer hosting hack.
Rosé in Cans
If you haven't jumped on the trend for wine in cans yet, this is the time. The quality of wine put into cans has skyrocketed in the past couple of years, and single-serve cans solve the problem of precisely what to do when you don't want to open a whole bottle. Plus, they're eco-friendly: cans are recyclable and have a much lower carbon footprint than bottles.
Keith Kenison, senior director of winemaking for 14 Hands Rosé Cans ($5.99 each, 14hands.com), shares why he thinks rosé in cans should be a staple of your summer routine: "Canned wine is great for on-the-go moments, like picnics at the park or days at the beach when you need your wine to stay cool. Rose is an incredibly diverse category of wine that is drinkable and approachable for all. With canned rosé, the possibilities for many different sipping occasions are endless!"
Rosé Cider and Beer
With rosé wine becoming so popular, is it any wonder that cider and Beer want to get in on the fun?
Production methods vary: some rosé ciders and beers get their rosy color from red grape skins, and others attain it from apple skins or other pink ingredients like hibiscus flowers. But, they all capture the light, refreshing, and bright essence of rosé! And their lower alcohol content means you can sip them all day long without getting tipsy or tired.
Rosé ciders to try include Shacksbury Organic Rosé Cider ($55 for 12 pack, shacksbury.com), Angry Orchard Rosé Cider ($17.99 for pack of 6, angryorchard.com), and Wölffer No. 139 Dry Rosé Cider ($19.79 for pack of 4, wolffer.com). For beer lovers, we recommend Crooked Stave Sour Rosé ($15.49 for pack of 6, crookedstave.com) or Rheingast Brewery' Little Bubs' Session Rosé Ale ($38 for 12 pack, rheingast.com).
While pale, delicate rosés from regions such as Côtes de Provence sparked the modern rosé revolution, there is a whole spectrum of rosé to explore. Some of the most exciting rosés are bold, concentrated, full of flavor, and even have a little bit of tannin. Consider them the summer version of the chillable reds' trend. If you want a rosé to pair with grilled steak, consider this bold style your perfect pour.
If you love French wines, look out for the wines of Tavel, a region that exclusively produces deep rosés. Great bottles to try include Les Lauzeraies Tavel ($17.99, wine.com) and Chateau D'Aqueria Tavel Rose ($19.99, wine.com). Italy also produces one of the iconic bold rosés, Cerasuolo d'Abruzzo (primarily made from the Montepulciano grape). Look for Fantini Cerasuolo D'Abruzzo DOC ($13, empsonusa.com) or Villa Gemma Cerasuolo d'Abruzzo ($11.92, vivino.com).