Summer 2009. There were celebrations in Provence and throughout Europe among quality winemakers in response to the news that the EU has dropped plans to permit production of Rosé by simply mixing white and red wine together. This ensures the future of the much more labour intensive traditional method where the grape juice is left in contact with the skins for a period. This gives the natural colour to the wine, but does not involve use of possibly incompatible blends. The traditional method results in top quality Rosés made from the juice of red grapes.
Simply mixing white and red wines is not unusual in some parts of the world and is usually done to reduce production costs. Whilst there are quite a few examples of good wines made this way it is very easy for many to be uninteresting in that they do not have much differentiation (except for their colour) from the white wine which forms their base. It is a technique too often used by winemakers to make what I call an "as well" wine. For example a producer who makes white and red wines, thinks it would be good to have a Rosé "as well". You can be certain that should we offer any new world wines made this way it will be because the blend has been very expertly achieved to make a quality wine that stands out from the crowd.