A guide to drinking rosé in winter, from the experts at Brown Brothers

Picture this: it’s a dark night, the rain rumbles against the window and it’s cold – at least by Australian standards. What kind of drink would you like?

Let me guess: a red wine or maybe a whisky? It would certainly be the usual. But according to wine connoisseurs at brown brothers, we should add rosé to this list. We spoke to Andre HarrisBrown Brothers ambassador and wine educator, and Bodee Awardchef of the Brown Brothers, to discover their consumption advice rosé during the cooler months.

Choose the right one winter rosé

Most people think red wine is the right taste for winter, why choose rosé instead?

Andrew: I think there is a change in consumption habits in Australia, especially around red wines. We are seeing more and more producers moving away from the potent blockbuster reds of the 1980s and 1990s. There has been an explosion of interest in lighter reds like pinot noir and tempranillo.

Rosé has been beneficial for people looking for lighter options, not only in terms of taste but also in terms of alcohol. In general, most full-bodied reds in Australia are between 13.5% and 15% alcohol by volume while most dry rosés are between 12.5% ​​and 13.5%. So you get a super fresh and tasty wine with a little less alcohol.

What is the right type of rosé for winter?

Andrew: I’m a real fan of the textured, dry rosé styles that have hit the market recently – made from varieties like Nebbiolo, Sangiovese and Grenache.

What is the best winter rosé this year?

Andrew: My go-to is the Brown Brothers Origins Rosé. This wine is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz from the King Valley, Heathcote and Swan Hill districts. It is made using the bleeding technique to extract a light salmon pink color. It is then fermented at cool temperatures in stainless steel tanks to retain the red fruit lift. The wine is fresh with aromas of watermelon, strawberry and spices. In the mouth, it is delicate while having a tasty and textured finish.

Do you have any tips for finding a rosé that suits your personal taste?

Andrew: Taste, taste, taste! Take a tour of the cellars (they will appreciate the post-Covid closures) and try as many different wines as possible. My wine drinking journey probably took five years of testing many different wine styles and never getting stuck on one for too long. It was the same journey as finding my favorite rosé. I now find myself drinking all different styles of wine depending on the occasion and the food.

Pair rosé with winter meals

What type of winter meal goes best with rosé?

Bodee: A fuller-bodied rosé can pair well with certain winter foods. A rich pork paella goes well with rosé and can be nice and warming in the winter without weighing you down like a rich, heavy braise. Plus, a hearty vegetable soup pairs well with the crisp acidity of many rosés.

What winter dessert goes best with rosé?

Bodee: A slightly sweeter rosé like rosé moscato works well with lighter desserts, sweet pastries and berries.

Do you have any tips for pairing rosé with food?

Bodee: The ultimate no-no when it comes to pairing food and rosé would be to not pair big, bold wines with light, raw seafood and the same the other way around – don’t pair not light wines with meat or a heavy, rich dessert. .

Go to a restaurant and ask your sommelier or server if you can taste different rosé wines to see what they will work with on the menu. They are a great resource as they know both the food and the rosé they offer.

The taste test: now it’s my turn!

On a very cold and windy winter evening, I looked for a “textured dry rosé”, just like Andrew had suggested. I looked for a nebbiolo, a sangiovese or a grenache and found the Turkey Flat rosé, which is a blend of grenache. It was the kind of evening where we usually indulged in strong red wine – all the other ingredients of the evening were the same: cozy TV show, fluffy blanket and chocolate. But this time we tried rosé.

The Turkey Flat Rosé was a pale peachy pink, with a subtle, dry flavor. On the bottle they recommend drinking the wine chilled – which may put off some winter drinkers – but I decided to ignore that advice and it worked out well. At room temperature, the wine was delicious. Unlike some sweeter rosés and white wines, this dry rosé did not become cloying or syrupy when hot, it remained light and easy to drink. Just as Andrew had said it was a relief to drink a wine with a lower alcohol percentage as it made it a more relaxed experience and meant I didn’t have to limit myself to one drink one night of the week (if the mood struck me).

I find it quite tiring to drink only heavy red wine in the winter, and rosé is lighter while retaining the warmth of a red, making it the perfect replacement. While a red wine sometimes goes with the cold and is quite comfortable, other times you just want something lighter – and now I’m going for rosé in those times.

Brown Brothers Origins Dry Rosé is available for purchase on the Brown Brothers website HERE or at select bottle shops.

To note: Interview responses have been edited for length and clarity.

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