What Rosé Pairs Best With Food?

What Rosé Pairs Best With Food?

Rosé is low-maintenance. It rarely demands things like decanting or aging, and it leaves food pairings to more “serious” styles of wine. Sure, rosé goes nicely with fresh fruit, charcuterie, or a caprese salad. But if you ask us, anyone analyzing wine and strawberry pairings has a little too much time on their hands. With that being said, there are a select few rosés that require a different conversation.

Rather than simple and crushable, these rosés have enough going on to make you take a beat between sips (or at least between glasses). They’re darker than the salmon-pink stuff in your beach cooler, made with heartier grapes that yield more herbal, savory wines. It’s not a common or easy thing to pull off, and the producers who do it best - Tempier, Pradeaux, Pibarnon - aren’t just known as great rosé producers. They’re legends across the wine world.

Château Pradeaux, Bandol Rosé

Château Pradeaux has been owned by the Portalis family for longer than the US has been a country, and Jean-Marie-Etienne Portalis helped draft the Napoleonic Code. In other words, it’s rosé that sponsors Summer Solstice parties in Amagansett. They make the richest rosé in France. Their hand-harvested mourvedre yields a powerful, age-worthy wine that pairs with surf and/or turf.

Ideal Pairing: A big piece of tuna with grilled corn salad, but you can’t really go wrong with anything you’d find at a BBQ.

Buona Notte, Rosé 'Rosa'

A natural rosé made from sangiovese in Oregon. It scores points for originality, but that’d be meaningless if the wine didn’t taste great. Fortunately, it does. The winds through Oregon’s Hood River Valley cool the vineyards at Buona Notte, keeping the wines crisp and refreshing. Meanwhile, a tiny splash of proper red sangiovese is added in the winery, darkening and deepening the rosé to the point that it becomes an ideal pizza wine.

Ideal Pairing: Margherita pizza with tons of fresh basil.

Clos Cibonne Tibouren, Rosé Provence 2020

While most Provençal rosé is made with light grapes like cinsault, Clos Cibonne uses a rare grape variety called tibouren. It produces an herbal, textured rosé with enough structure to stand up to fatty tuna or grilled chicken. And thanks to cooling winds coming off the nearby Mediterranean, the wines retain a freshness that keeps them enjoyable during outdoor hangs in August. If you need an icebreaker during one of those hangs, you can mention that Clos Cibonne’s patriarch, Jean-Baptiste de Cibon, fought under Marquis de Lafayette in the American Revolution.

Ideal Pairing: Grilled fish drizzled with olive oil and herbs.

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