Rosé can be tricky. While more and more people consider it a drink for any time, there is still a certain buzz that drives up sales during the warmer months. It’s important to offer bottles that inspire seasonal drinking but can sell year-round if the supply isn’t wiped out by Labor Day. On the other hand, every establishment wants to have enough to satisfy demand, which can be influenced by weather, travel conditions, and other circumstances that are out of a buyer’s control.
To find bottles that reliably hit it out of the park, look to wine retailers who have their finger on the pulse of what people want to drink in their homes, with their friends, and with their meals.
When SevenFifty Daily asked retailers which rosés they expect to sell big, they highlighted a broad mix of varieties and regions, from a top-selling Loire Valley Saumur rosé, to a sparkling Tasmanian rosé, to a bottle from a tiny appellation in Bourgogne. Here’s what they recommended. (All wines are listed with price per bottle.)
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Domaine des Sanzay Saumur Rosé 2022, Loire Valley, France; $19
Suggested by Tom Wilcox, owner and founder, Ansonia Wines, Newton, Massachusetts
Ansonia Wines is a father-and-son French wine merchant specializing in small-production vineyards around France. Customers and fans love tuning in on social media when they make their research and buying rounds in Europe. The Wilcox team considers this Loire Valley rosé from Domaine des Sanzay to be a must-stock. “It’s our most popular rosé; we’d have a customer revolt if we ever stopped selling it,” says Tom Wilcox. It’s 100 percent Cabernet Franc, which he says is “pure summer freshness”—dry but bursting with fruit, great acidity, and low alcohol. It also has a beautiful label, which is designed by the winemaker’s son.
Gobelsburg Cistercien Rosé 2021, Kamptal, Austria; $28
Suggested by Kristina Barbee, owner and vintner, Ad Astra Wine Bar and Market, Springfield, Illinois
Kristina Barbee says that customers at Ad Astra, located in a historic building in downtown Springfield, are enthusiastic about the unique palate of Gobelsburg Cistercien Rosé, a blend of Zweigelt, St. Laurent, and Pinot Noir from Austria’s Kamptal region. “It has a straightforward and fresh floral nose with tart fruit, hints of wild cherry, and fresh berries,” says Barbee. “Perfect for spring and summer.” She notes the wine is excellent when chilled, but also holds well straight from the bottle off the shelf. Barbee chose this one for Ad Astra’s spring menu because of the “cohesion of the tasting notes and nose of the wine.” Guests at Ad Astra can also enjoy local cheese boards, and this rosé pairs well with many of the spring and summer selections on offer.
Noble Hill Mourvèdre Rosé 2021, Simonsberg-Paarl, South Africa; $22
Suggested by Crystal Cameron-Schaad, owner and lead educator, Crystal Palate Wine & Gourmet, Norfolk, Virginia
Crystal Palate owner Crystal Cameron-Schaad, DipWSET, says that Noble Hill Mourvèdre Rosé is “up to the challenge of pairing” for lighter summer fare as well as traditional barbecue foods. She also likes the ease of the Stelvin closure for outdoor entertaining. She considers this bottle value-driven and complex and appreciates that it is organic and vegan. “Kristopher Tillery, the winemaker and owner of Noble Hill, took inspiration from Bandol and created the first Mourvèdre rose in South Africa,” she says. “I had an opportunity to spend some time at Noble Hill last year and was impressed with the quality of these artisan wines, the history, sustainability efforts, and value proposition of the estate.”
Elk Cove Vineyards Rosé of Pinot Noir 2022, Willamette Valley, Oregon; $18.99
Suggested by Tasha Zonski-Armijo, owner and general manager, Jubilation Wine & Spirits, Albuquerque, New Mexico
Jubilation Wine & Spirits proprietor and New Mexico native Tasha Zonski-Armijo gets her hands on Elk Cove Rosé of Pinot Noir knowing that it sells out at the iconic Willamette Valley winery—the first in what is now the Yamhill-Carlton AVA—year after year. “It is a good fit for our establishment because of the value, quality, and food friendliness,” she says. The family-run store has long been a part of the fabric of Albuquerque, New Mexico, and Zonski-Armijo says, “We chose this wine because it is 100 percent estate-grown fruit from a family-run winery like we are a family-run wine shop for three generations and over 80 years.”
Paumanok Vineyards North Fork Rosé 2021, North Fork of Long Island, New York; $18
Suggested by Yannick Benjamin, cofounder, Beaupierre Wines & Spirits, New York City
Beaupierre Wines and Spirits is the brainchild of Heidi Turzyn and Yannick Benjamin, two native New Yorkers with a passion for wine and hospitality. “The Massoud family, Paumanok Vineyards‘ proprietor, is one of the oldest families on the North Fork and has this incredible ability to showcase what this coastal region can produce,” says Benjamin, who is also a sommelier and the cofounder of Contento Restaurant in East Harlem. “It is exactly this reason why I continue to work with the rosé from Paumanok.” He suggests pairing this “brilliantly executed wine”—a blend of Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon—with freshly shucked oysters or a simple salad using local Long Island products.
Alain Vignot Bourgogne Côte Saint Jacques Pinot Gris 2020, Burgundy, France; $34
Suggested by Dennis Sherman, co-owner, BurgundyWine.com, Elden Selections, and Domaine de Cromey, Saint-Sernin-du-Plain, France
Ellie and Dennis Sherman of Elden Selections (El+Den) sell small-production, affordable Bourgogne wines direct-to-consumer, most of which are hard to find elsewhere on the U.S. market. That’s the case with this Alain Vignot vin gris from the tiny Bourgogne Côte Saint Jacques appellation, which sits north of Chablis and only has around a dozen hectares of vineyards. Though this is technically considered a “gray” wine, as it is made with the gray-skinned Pinot Gris grape, its very pale salmon color allows it to sit next to rosés on the shelf. The region’s chalky, flinty soils create a complex and vibrant wine.
Jansz Brut Rosé NV, Tasmania, Australia; $25
305 Wines is a boutique wine shop in Miami, selling wines from around the world, as well as fine Japanese sake. “Jansz has always been a bestseller for us, as it fits the profile of high quality at a fair price, plus it is quite unique to have a Tasmanian wine in the portfolio and introduce it to clients,” says 305 Wines cofounder Alessandra Esteves. Jansz Brut Rosé is an Australian sparkling wine made by the traditional method and encapsulating what they like to call “méthode Tasmanoise”—celebrating the uniqueness of Tasmania. Clients love the food-friendliness, vibrant acidity, juicy fruit flavors, and perfumed finish. According to Esteves, “Sparkling rosés are definitely part of the Miami vibe.”
Nervi-Conterno Il Rosato 2021, Piedmont, Italy; $34
Suggested by Sally Stewart, co-owner, Denver Wine Merchant, Denver, Colorado
For a taste of rosé—or, as the Italians say, rosato—from Italy, Denver Wine Merchant co-owner Sally Stewart turns to Nervi-Conterno. “We love this wine because it’s made by the best Nebbiolo producer in the world, and it’s affordable,” she says. For her Colorado customers, this makes the perfect year-round wine. She calls it “craveable” in warm weather yet also satiating when the temperatures drop. “Somehow, the wine is both refreshing and complex,” she says. Another unique selling point that makes this a must-stock in Denver: It’s one of those outstanding rosés that can age and even improve over a few years.
Bodegas Olivares Altos de la Hoya Jumilla Rosado 2021, Jumilla, Spain; $9.99
Suggested by Annie Edgerton, sales associate and social media maven, Flatiron Wines, New York City
For the budget-minded consumer, Flatiron Wines’ Annie Edgerton votes for rosato from Bodegas Olivares in Jumilla, Spain. An outstanding bargain, it comes in at around 10 bucks, it’s crisp and dry with plenty of juicy ripe fruit character, and it’s the perfect bottle for people that are thirsty to experiment with rosé wines from unexpected spots. “I love when I get to share a taste of this with customers,” she says. “With each sip, a bottle flies off the shelf—it’s just that good for the price.” Besides being a gem for customers, this is regarded as a staff favorite. “I have six bottles in my fridge at home, ready to pop at a moment’s notice,” she says.
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Jill Barth is a wine writer and journalist and a Fellowship award winner of the Symposium for Professional Wine Writers. Her work has been published by Forbes.com, USA Today, Wine Enthusiast, Decanter, France-Amérique, and others. She holds the Provence Master Level from the Wine Scholar Guild. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram: @jillbarth.