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Did you know there are three main methods to creating rosé? Have you ever wondered why there are so many different shades? Read on to find your answers!

Rosé is created from essentially any red grape variety and receives it’s color from the grape skins soaking in the juice. Winemakers have complete control over the color of the resulting wine. While there is a lot of flexibility in the production of rosé, certain varieties and styles are preferred over others. Most styles are dry with flavors consisting of strawberry, melon, citrus, rose, and flowers.

There are three main methods to create rosé.

1) Saignée

A french term meaning “bled”. Saignée occurs in the first several hours of making a red wine when a small amount of the free-run juice is bled off after a short maceration and placed in a separate vat or container. The idea is that this will produce a lightly pink wine and/or a concentrated red wine remaining. This is considered the premium method for creating rosé and is fairly rare to find considering it makes a small amount with each batch of grapes.

2) Maceration

This is the most common method for producing rosé. Red wine grape skins are soaked in juice for a period of time. The time that it spends in the juice reflects the color of the resulting wine. Most skins macerate between 2 – 48 hours. The less time the lighter the color and the more time the darker the color. For example, red wine is created by the juice having contact with the skins for weeks at a time depending on the variety whereas rosé wines are only in contact with skins for hours to maybe a day or two.

3) Blending

As the name implies, this method involves adding a small about of red wine to a large container of white wine. Red wine is very dominant so you rarely see more than 5-10% added. This method is extremely common in sparkling rosé production and is the required method for Champagne or any sparkling rosés made in the Traditional Method.