A few weeks ago at a concert in Central Park, in the (endless) line for beer and wine, a group of young ladies behind me received some dreadful news: the sole rosé available was a DARK PINK. Not a crisp salmon as I imagine they'd have preferred. We're talking fatty tuna. FOR SHAME! If this group had learned that the band we were there to see would actually not be playing tonight, I can't imagine they would have been more outraged. Now, I don't mind a nice ruby rosé, so I ordered mine in pint size and left them to work through the aftermath of the scandal.
In researching local New York wine events for *ahem* my own continuing education (which I'm very serious about), I was astonished by the sheer volume of rosé soirées: last weekend's La Nuit en Rosé, which we attended because, obviously....wine cruise; Rosés & Rooftops, to benefit culinary arts education, Morrell Wine Bar's War of the Rosés. And the puns don't stop there; next month, there's Pinknic, on Governor's Island, which sounds a bit like Dîner en Blanc, except of course, en Rosé.
This obsession with rosé isn't new. Page Six reported major shortages in the Hamptons in August of both 2014 and 2012 (stock up, y'all; this drought pattern looks cyclical). A new development is the concept of Frosé; a slurpee/wine combo, which we are apparently about to enter "The Summer of." Yes Way Rosé is more a guide to living the rosé life, without even a bottle to sell (though the beach towels will run you 80 bucks). Which got us to wondering... (cue Carrie Bradshaw voiceover) is rosé simply a type of wine, or is it an entire lifestyle?
Rosé is made in just about every country that makes wine. There are two options for making rosé, the first involves brief skin contact with red wine grapes, the length of which determines the richness of the color and often the wine; the second method involves adding in some red wine during the process, as is done to make sparkling rosé in Champagne, for example. A gentleman we spoke with aboard La Nuit de Rosé has been selling rosé so long, he recalled a time when $40/bottle Domaine Ott was the only rosé in the game, you either afforded it or you did not. Now rosé comes in boxes, cans, kegs, or double magnums, at price points for drinking in your local public park, or on your Cannes mega-yacht.
Rosé has been credited by some with making wine drinking in general more approachable, and as being a more "inclusive" wine, which you could reason might open up more palates to all wines; rosé as a gateway wine. We like it.
Whether you're religiously subscribed to rosé of the palest pink, like our devastated friends in Central Park, mentioned above, or you've had the opportunity to sample a breadth of rosé as wide as we recently did at New York restaurant Pearl & Ash's recent rosé pairing dinner (O.P.P. side note: Patrick Capiello's Renegade Wine Dinners are the shiznit, go at once), your enthusiasm for this versatile style of wine probably won't be fading anytime soon. Maybe you've replaced your pool beers with cans of it, or you've familiarized yourself with the convenience of stocking boxes or even a whole keg for entertaining. We imagine as summer goes on, fans will only find more opportunities to enjoy rosé, and perhaps even keep enjoying it into the fall and winter. So bring on the magnums, the risé of rosé isn't slowing down.
(Cover Photo) FUNBOY pool float - Photo Credit: Gray Malin