YOU SAY ROSÉ, I SAY ROSATO

ELLE (Australia) - - Contents -

Don’t panic: you can still get your pink wine fix in win­ter.

Spent the warmer months go­ing hard on sweet, sweet light-pink rosé and now in need of an an­ti­dote? Say “cheers” to rosato, the Ital­ian equiv­a­lent that – al­though tech­ni­cally rosé by any other name – tends to be drier, more savoury and fuller in flavour than French rosé due to the char­ac­ter­is­tics of the unique Ital­ian grape va­ri­etals used in its cre­ation.

While the French stuff is most com­monly made in Provence (al­most 90 per cent of the re­gion’s wine out­put is rosé) in the coun­try’s south­east, us­ing mourvè­dre, syrah and gre­nache grapes, Italy’s rosato sup­ply comes largely from Puglia. Many of Italy’s na­tive pur­ple grapes – such as la­grein, san­giovese, mon­tepul­ciano, bar­bera, nerello mas­calese and canaiolo – are fruitier and more in­tense than their French coun­ter­parts, of­ten re­sult­ing in rosatos with heady cherry, cran­berry, melon and jas­mine notes.

Rosato is usu­ally darker than your mil­len­ni­alpink rosés, too. Though clearer pinks of the French va­ri­ety have tra­di­tion­ally been favoured over those that fall on the bolder end of the colour spec­trum (be­cause a darker colour is of­ten, mis­tak­enly, thought to be a cheaper and more sickly sweet wine), more vi­brant rosatos of­ten have more body and in­tense fruit notes.

Lou Dowl­ing, from P&V Wine And Liquor, a bot­tle shop in Syd­ney’s New­town that spe­cialises in nat­u­ral and lo­cal drops, is a fan, de­scrib­ing rosato sim­ply as “re­ally fuck­ing de­li­cious”. Be­cause of its more sub­stan­tial flavour, she says, rosato goes just as well “with pizza, at home watch­ing Rupaul’s Drag Race” as it does “with snacky stuff such as cured meats, olives and cheeses”.

Now, se­lect lo­cal wine­mak­ers are cre­at­ing their own takes on rosato, us­ing grapes that tra­di­tion­ally grow in Italy’s wine­mak­ing re­gions, but also thrive here. Dowl­ing’s pick? The Giovanni Ar­mani Gior­gio Rosato dell’amore, made in the Barossa Val­ley from 100 per cent neb­bi­olo, a grape va­ri­etal that orig­i­nates in north­west Italy. “It’s su­per zesty and has a re­ally jazzy la­bel,” she says, prov­ing that, in this case, judg­ing a book by its cover is a good move.

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