In 1975, Bob Trinchero of Napa Valley’s Sutter Home Winery invented a new type of wine: White Zinfandel. Actually, it sort of invented itself, a happy accident of a stuck fermentation that you can read about here.
Before long, White Zin was being produced by the millions of cases by Sutter Home, Beringer and other wineries. It simultaneously delighted a new generation of drinkers, who preferred sweetness in their wine, and horrified wine connoisseurs, some of whom seem to live by the mantra, “Dry or die.”
But White Zin’s ascent, inexplicably, caused many people to “un-think pink” altogether. Wonderful — and fully dry — rosé-style wines were mentally lumped into the same category as White Zin, and their stature (as well as their sales) fell. It seemed as if the only Americans drinking rosé were those who had experienced the wonderful Provencal versions first-hand.
We rosé lovers owe a great debt to Tony Soter of Napa’s Etude winery. In 1992, some 17 years after the introduction of White Zin, he crafted a dry rosé from Pinot Noir grapes. Based on Etude’s success with that bottling, other California vintners followed suit. Even imports of Provencal rosé grew 25-fold over a 10-year period beginning in 2003.
Today, you may find rosé bottled under any number of designations, including Rosado, Rosato, Vin Gris and blush.
Regardless of the verbiage, rosé-style wines offer an abundance of drinking pleasure, especially during the warmer months, not to mention great food affinity. Their popularity is a trend that we’d like to see continue for a long, long time.
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Check out some thirst-quenching, delicious, rosé-style wines that happen to be on sale for a limited time here.