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Yorkville Cellars
 
August 8, 2019 | Yorkville Cellars

The Four Ways to Make Rosé

With Rosé season winding down, we can’t help but ponder over the complexities and wonders of this popular summer wine. Like the fact that Rosé has become quite a big deal in the world of wine and has greatly evolved over the years. From a sweet, candy-like wine to dry and sophisticated Rosés, hopefully, you’ve found a style to fill up your wine tumbler for the past three months. So, if you’ve joined in on the “Rosé all day” phenomenon, we think it would be helpful for you to know a thing or two–or rather four–about this lovable varietal! Time to grab a glass of your favorite Rosé (preferably Yorkville) and discover the four different ways to make Rosé.

LIMITED SKIN MACERATION

Limited Skin Maceration is the most popular method used for producing high-quality Rosé wines, so most likely you have tasted this style. The process is exactly what it sounds like. The grapes are gently crushed and the juice is left to soak with the skin of the grapes for a limited amount of time (between 2 hours to 2 days) as opposed to weeks or months for red wine. The amount of time the juice is left soaking with the skins will ultimately determine the overall color and flavor. For instance, the longer the maceration, the darker or more richly flavored the Rosé will be in your glass. It just so happens that our Vin D’une Nuit is made with this method. The grapes are sourced earlier than most so that the sugar level in the grapes are low. The skins then remained on the juice for a few hours on the evening of its harvest. This entire process lends itself to a light, dry, and vibrant Rosé with flavors of crushed pineapple and under-ripe cherries. It’s the perfect example of a Rosé produced by way of limited skin maceration. 

SAIGNÉE METHOD

This method involves bleeding, but don’t worry, only the wine has to bleed. Why? Good question! This method involves “bleeding” off a portion of red wine juice after it’s been in contact with the skins and seeds. It’s an unusual method when it comes to making Rosé. It is most often thought of as a by-product of red winemaking and its primary function is to increase the concentration of red wines, making it the most unique method of the four. When this method is used, it produces much darker and bolder flavors than that of a typical Rosé. So if you’re generally not a fan of this wine because of its lighter qualities, a Rosé made through the saignée method may be your exception! 

DIRECT PRESSING

Next, let’s dive into a more traditional approach to making Rosé. This method is very similar to limited skin maceration as the juice is left in contact with the skins for a limited amount of time. Grapes are grown and selected exclusively for Rosé production, and often crushed as whole clusters. It’s impossible for the juice to have no contact with the skin, but this method comes close. The grapes are pressed right away to remove the skins, as a white wine would be vinified, resulting in an extremely light-colored Rosé with perfumed aromatics and flavors of strawberry and grapefruit.  


BLENDING

Red and white make pink! This method is done by blending about 95% red wine with 5% white wine to make a Rosé of sorts. We say this because the practice to blend wines post-fermentation is not preferred and is actually prohibited in Europe. Champagne, France, however, is allowed to use this method to make Rosé Champagne. Regardless of vinification laws around the world, this is the least used method for producing Rosé.

Now that you’re an expert on the four styles of Rosé wine, it’s time to make your own… Just kidding, leave that part to us! We promise we’ll continue to satisfy your Rosé cravings with our Vin D’une Nuit Rosé and Rosé of Petit Verdot. If you haven’t tried them yet, now’s the time. After all, summer’s not over yet!

 

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