Fifty Shades of Rosé

Wine explorer Julien Yung Mameaux of the Experience Company has scouted the world to find the most arousing rosé wines

Chateau La Coste in near Aix-en-Provence

For many, the wine world is made up of red or white wines. But just like there is grey between black and white, rosé wines come in multiple and exciting shades, tastes and styles. Looking at a glass of such wine, rosé is rarely the colour used by professionals to describe its hues; it can vary between melon, peach or grapefruit, Barbie doll-pink, salmon, the pale to intense pigments of an onion’s skin, or orangey like the fruit or even a Buddhist monk’s civara. In short, a delight to the eye.

Understanding Rosé Wine

Rosé’s colours, aromas and flavours are deeply imparted by the chosen method of production. Blending of juices from white and black grapes is the most obvious – but this must not be misinterpreted with the disgraceful blending of white and red wines that have already been fermented. The art and skills of a rosé winemaker are best shown in the technique called “skin contact”, where the white juice gradually turns to rosé according to how long the dark skin of the grapes has been macerating in it. Imagine what is required to keep consistency across gallons of wine, year after year. On the opposite, for red grape juice, the saignée (“bleeding” in French) method requires removing a portion of the red wine to contain the colour development.

While rosé wine may not - and is not intended to - have the depth of the finest classified growths, they certainly bring surprising enjoyment and a different character to any drinking occasion. A rosé wine is meant to have maximum fruitiness and freshness and therefore comes with a unique mouthfeel. They come from grapes as various as Pinot Noir, Grenache, Merlot among others for French rosés, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah for Australian ones; Tempranillo for a Spanish rosado wine, Sangiovese for an Italian rosato, or Zinfandel for an American eponymous wine.

Pleasure of the Senses

There is an undeniable charm that comes with a bottle of rosé, going well beyond the sexy-shaped containers they are sometimes housed. Your date night will start with a sparkling rosé – be it rosé champagne like the deliciously famous Laurent-Perrier Brut Rosé or the well-crafted JB Janisson-Barradon boutique rosé champagne. For salad or tapas, a slightly sweet or lightly sparkling rosé wine, like Ameztoi of Txakolina in northern Spain, will go along well. With grilled or barbecued meat, a wide variety of French rosés from Provence, like Chateau de Pibarnon near Bandol, Chateau La Coste near Aix-en-Provence, Ollier-Taillefer of Languedoc-Roussillon, or those of Tavel will stimulate your senses. Beyond France, dry ones from Italy will also stir emotions. And a powerful dry rosé from South Africa like Mulderbush or Pine Ridge of Napa Valley will make you melt over desert.

The rosé wine world is gifted with both proficiency and glamour, and men are invited into what may look like a women’s universe. Today’s most trendy rosé winery owners are undoubtedly Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, whose Provencal estate produces the delectable Miravel rosé, but there are countless and affordable choices for the summer … or all year-round, as the southern Europeans favour.

Enquire and enter a lucky draw to win a free bottle of wine! Contact your travel and events concierge The Experience Company ( at +852 3488 9565 or and quote “HKGolfer”.

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