Summer has arrived in the Pacific Northwest and nothing says summer more than rosé. Tonight Seattle Uncorked is hosting their 7th annual summer wine event – Rosé Revival & Other Cool Whites – at Ray’s Boathouse. The proceeds from the event will support the Ryther Child Center.
Rosé is an oft-maligned wine. Just this morning the Wall Street Journal writes that “American Rosé Stalls Out.” The article says that many wineries treat rosé as a throw away wine and that US prices are often non-competitive. Washington gets briefly mentioned when the authors reference a Washington rosé made from Blaufränkisch (no mention of the winery or whether they liked the wine).
There are three ways of making rosé. The first, and most common, is allowing skins from red wine grapes to remain in contact with the young wine for a very short period (several days). This gives the wine a light pink color. The longer the wine is in contact with the skins the deeper the color. The second method is called Saignée, where the winemaker removes some if the juice from the must early on in the winemaking process. This is referred to as “bleeding the vats.” The third method of producing rosé is by blending red and white wine together. This is by far the least common.
Rosés can be made from any varietal. Common grapes used for rosé in Washington include Cabernet Franc, Grenache, Syrah, and Sangiovese. Rosés are made to be consumed within a year or two of release and are served chilled.
What is the state of Washington rosé? I will let you know my thoughts in a future post. If you are attending tonight’s event, make sure to say hello.
A list of participating wineries is below. To see a list of other upcoming events from Seattle Uncorked go here.