South of France - Provence - Rosé winemaking

4 important questions on South of France - Provence - Rosé winemaking

How does rose from Provence get its pale color?

  • Low level of colour in the skins of the traditional grape varieties
    • Grenache noir, Cinsaut, Tibouren (local variety)
  • AOC regulations allow up to 20% of white grapes in the blend

How is rosé in Provence made

  • Direct pressing (now most common)
  • short maceration (few hours) on the skins
  • acidification for good balance fruit-acidity
  • protection from oxygen
    • chilling to 4C
    • special press e.g. Bucher Vaslin

Whole bunch pressing vs destemmed (for rosé)

  • Whole bunch
    • more time consuming > fewer bunches can be loaded into press
    • gentler > less extraction solids and phenolics
    • more juice produced at lower pressure > stems create channels for the juice
    • handharvesting only
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Fermentation - finishing Provence rosé

  • Typically in stainless steel
  • cultured or (less used) ambient yeast
  • 14-18C
  • AOC: fermentation to dry is mandatory
  • Malo blocked to preserve primary fruit
  • colour to deep > fining
  • stored 2-3 months before bottling or (less) 8-10 months on the lees
  • oak-aged > e.g.Château d'Esclans

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