Anthony Rose: It’s not easy to say why there’s been a drop in rosé sales, but boredom and price rises are likely reasons

As the French pop singer Claude François sang in 1978, "Bordeaux rosé, take us away and make the room begin to sway...". Well, the room has been swaying to rosé in the UK ever since the long hot summer of 2003 had us reaching for the nearest bottle of chilled rosé to quench our thirst. Once, just an also-ran squeezed between red and white wine and considered suitable only for ladies who lunch, pink wine has been transformed over the past eight years into a serious drink that even the most macho of males can enjoy.

With rosé outperforming red and white wine until last year, something had to give. Sure enough, while nearly 13 million cases of rosé meant more than one in every 10 bottles of wine sold last year in the UK, last year's peak of 12.6 million cases tailed off by more than a quarter of a million cases. It's not easy to pinpoint quite why there's been a drop, but the most likely reason is boredom combined with a torrent of confected rosé and an average price rise of 5 per cent thanks to unfavourable exchange rates. Despite the slow-down, however, rosé is here to stay.

Trawling recent tastings for some bright pink spots on the horizon, Sainsbury's came up with pure tempranillo from la Mancha in the 2010 Rio de la Vida Tempranillo, £5.99, whose ripe strawberry-jam-like character displayed an ashamedly off-dry whack of residual sugar to keep its customers sweet, all the while retaining a breezy summer freshness. Still in Spain but more sophisticated and more elegantly dry, there was much to commend in the ultra-modern 2010 Rioja Rosado 2010, Muga, £9.99 buy 2 = £7.99, Majestic, pale yet surprisingly full-flavoured with a juicy, cranberry and cherryish edge to the fruit.

Asda's 2010 Extra Special Languedoc Rosé, £6.97, a blend of syrah, cabernet sauvignon and grenache, from Jean Claude Mas, hit the sweet spot for its ripe, candied, raspberryish-fruit quality, but it was overshadowed by the 2010 Mayu Carmenère Syrah, £7.68, a sumptuously juicy strawberry-cup-fruity yet dry blend from Chile's Elqui Valley.

Chile is clearly getting the hang of rosé, as Marks & Spencer showed with its 2010 Viña Leyda Secano Estate Pinot Noir Rosé, £7.99, a winning pink wine with a Pacific Ocean-cooled, juicily crisp redcurranty snap to it.

All rosé roads lead to Provence which is hard to beat when it delivers wine of the quality of the salmon-pink 2010 Château Ste Marguerite Grande Réserve Cru Classé, Côtes de Provence Rosé, £11.99, buy 2 = £9.99, Majestic. This is a midsummer night's dream of an elegantly styled dry pink with crisp summer-pudding fruitiness. Lovely, too, is the 2010 Mas de Cadenet Rosé Sainte Victoire, Côtes de Provence, £11.50/ £11.95, Halifax Wines (01422 256333), Hanging Ditch (01618 328222), Last Drop Wines (02073512973), a pretty pale rosé with aromatic, bodied berry fruit.

If you want to make a bigger splash into rosé this summer, there's a spectacular magnum worth getting your hands around. The 2010 AIX Rosé 2010, Coteaux d'Aix en Provence, £19.99, Majestic, is your ticket to the Mediterranean. A pale pink with the single word AIX emblazoned in large characters across the label, this is a classic Provençal rosé, full of the snappy joys of raspberry fruit with a deceptive amount of flavour and richness considering that it finishes so elegantly dry... I can feel the room beginning to sway.

Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookPart of The Independent’s new eBook series The Great Composers
Arts and Entertainment
Natural beauty: Aidan Turner stars in the new series of Poldark
tv
Arts and Entertainment
Season three of 'House of Cards' will be returning later this month
tv

News
VIDEO
News
Mia Freedman, editorial director of the Mamamia website, reads out a tweet she was sent.
news
News
people
Arts and Entertainment
The write stuff: masters of story-telling James Joyce, left, and Thomas Hardy
books...begging to differ, John Walsh can't even begin to number the ways
Sport
Jose Mourinho on Sky Sports
footballEXCLUSIVE COLUMN Paul Scholes: It was not a leg-breaking tackle, as the Chelsea manager had claimed
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Food & Drink

    Recruitment Genius: Cleaning Manager - York and Bradford

    £26000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The post holder is a key member of the V...

    Recruitment Genius: Vehicle Breakdown Recovery Drivers

    £18000 - £28800 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Vehicle Breakdown Recovery Driv...

    Recruitment Genius: Processing Partner

    £15000 - £19200 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Processing Partner is require...

    Recruitment Genius: PPC Manager - SW London

    £34000 - £37000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This specialist travel agent ba...

    Day In a Page

    HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

    Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

    Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
    How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

    Time to play God

    Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
    MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

    MacGyver returns, but with a difference

    Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
    Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

    Tunnel renaissance

    Why cities are hiding roads underground
    'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

    Boys to men

    The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
    Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

    Crufts 2015

    Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
    10 best projectors

    How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

    Want to recreate the big-screen experience in your sitting room? IndyBest sizes up gadgets to form your film-watching
    Manchester City 1 Barcelona 2 player ratings: Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man?

    Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

    Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man at the Etihad?
    Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

    Monaco: the making of Wenger

    Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
    Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

    Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

    Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
    In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

    In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

    This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
    'Birdman' and 'Bullets Over Broadway': Homage or plagiarism?

    Homage or plagiarism?

    'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
    Broadchurch ends as damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

    A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

    Broadchurch, Series 2 finale, review
    A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower: inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

    Inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

    A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower