Rose is a style of wine that has seen its share of ups and downs over the years. The white Zinfandel boom of the 1970s and 1980s severely damaged the reputation of Rose and left the style languishing for years.
What a shame however, proper, dry style roses are delightful wines that are a perfect fit during the summer or equally at home on the dinner table. In BC we are fortunate that the style received a new lease on life when Joie’s Rose took the province by storm.
Over the years rose has been made in a few different ways. In the new world, particularly North America, two different rose production methods emerged that produced decidedly inferior wines. Some wineries produced rose by blending a white and a red wine. Other wineries produced rose as a by-product of red wine production, drawing off some juice early in the fermentation in order to increase the concentration in the red wine. Both of these methods produce rose wines that lack the freshness and litheness that makes great rose. These shortcuts did nothing to help the image of rose in the consumer’s mind.
Like other wines, the best way of making rose is to start in the vineyard and cultivate the grapes expressly for the wine you intend to make. This means keeping crop levels low, and for great rose, picking a little earlier than you would if you were making red wine – retaining the fresh fruit aromas and refreshing acidity. It is this approach that has been used in France for decades, and that we at Le Vieux Pin are firmly committed to.