Celebrate the First Day of Summer with a Glass of Rosé Champagne!

20th June 2024

The Summer of Rosé Champagne

On this first day of summer – also known as summer solstice – The Champagne Bureau UK* has put together a guide to Rosé Champagne for those who want to celebrate la vie en rosé this summer.

Rosé is regarded as the quintessential summer drink, perfectly suited for warm weather and outdoor gatherings. The nation clearly loves this complex and fruity style, as Rosé Champagne is the second largest style of Champagne shipped to the UK. Demand has increased by 16% in the last 10 years in UK.

Perfect for summer get-togethers, Rosé Champagne can range from soft to deep pink and from very light to full-bodied. We have collated some tips and information on Rosé Champagne, for those who want to learn more about this style, and how to pair it with the perfect summer dish.

Why Rosé?

Not only is Rosé Champagne having a moment and becoming increasingly fashionable globally by the day, but this style is versatile – and can range from being light to much more full-bodied. They offer such a wide spectrum of aromas with some wines developing notes of freshness containing hints of citrus fruits and strawberries or, in contrast, aromas that are smoother and more powerful such as ripe yellow and small red fruits. As these wines age, these aromas develop notes of dried fruit and spices – offering a unique versatility that not all styles can.

Putting the pink in Rosé

Rosé Champagne comes in every conceivable shade of pink from soft pink, salmon pink to a darker raspberry pink. Unbeknown to many, Rosé Champagnes’ distinct and aesthetically pleasing pink hue can be produced in two ways: Blending and Macerating. Blended Rosés are obtained by mixing white wines with a small amount of red wine (produced in the Champagne region), usually 5% -20% – this is the most commonly practiced method. In contrast, Macerated Rosés are created by macerating the juice of black grapes in their skins from 24 to 72 hours according to the year and the colour. This is essentially the bleeding of the black grape skins into the white wine. Whatever production method is used, Rosé Champagne’s iconic pink bubbles are always prevalent.

Coupe de Champagne rosé

What to pair it with?

Rosé is one of the most versatile and food-friendly styles of Champagne, as the depth of flavour combined with acidity allows it to be paired with an array of different dishes. Rosé Champagne wines have a flamboyant joyfulness that combines with dishes of unfamiliar flavour and fragrance to create new, warm and refined harmonies. Curry’s, tajines, white meats glazed with pineapple, figs or coconuts and other dishes from the East or Far East go beautifully with Rosé Champagne – provided you maintain a sense of balance and avoid overwhelming the palate with ’explosive’ combinations.

Finding the right pairings also depends on the type of rosé you are selecting:

Lighter rosés pair best with deep water fish, served with fruits such as lemon or crispy vegetables, as well as sushis, sashimis and tempuras.

More fleshy rosés need robust food with flavour: tasty ‘red‘ meats such as duck, pigeon, beef and lamb seasoned with warm (cumin, saffron) or ‘hotter’ spices (white, grey or black pepper), and stews.

Mature rosés (refined, old vintages or ‘cuvée spéciale’), need practically no accompaniment. Bring out their special nature with dishes of delicate simplicity and subtle fragrances with lightly marinated shellfish or lightly sautéed whitish meats sprinkled with mild spices. Complex, mature rosé Champagne calls for oriental dishes.

If you’re looking for a food pairing that screams summer just as much as Rosé Champagne, then look no further than the British summer classic of strawberries and cream – originally introduced by Thomas Wolsey (the right-hand man to King Henry VIII) and now a staple of the Wimbledon Championships since its establishment in 1877 – Rosé Champagne’s aromas around notes of freshness or complex wild berry fruit notes are an excellent companion to this British staple.

With the world’s drinks turning pink for summer, now is the perfect time to enjoy a glass of Rosé Champagne.

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