The official start of summer just a week away which also means the official start to rosé season! When the sun starts to shine, more and more people reach for the rosé, but there are still those who are wary to embrace the pink drink. For years, it had a less-than-serious reputation as an overly sweet, white zinfandel. But times certainly have changed!

These days, there is substantially more rosé on the market and what’s available is a much higher quality wine than just a decade ago. Rosé is now considered the wine that is most easily paired with food, in part because of its diversity of flavors. Rosé is an ideal wine to pair with grilled items, Mediterranean foods, pizza or even egg dishes. (Rosé for breakfast, anyone?)

And while the color can vary from a pale pink to a deep rose, the color doesn’t indicate the sweetness, dryness or alcohol content of the wine. Rosé is made from red grapes but unlike some red wines, which can ferment for weeks with the grape skins intact, rosé wines are stained by the grape skins for just a few hours.

As you can imagine, just about any red grape varietal can be used to make rosé. Here in Washington, Cabernet Franc is a top choice along with Sangiovese, Syrah, Grenache, Mourvedre and Merlot.

Of course, it’s no coincidence that a few Woodinville wineries are hosting special events to roll out the rosé carpet for the summer season. On Thursday, June 15th, you can join two Woodinville winemakers for a fun evening at the W Seattle’s TRACE Restaurant. Kit Singh of Lauren Ashton Cellars and John Patterson of Patterson Cellars will be at the “Everything’s Coming Up Rosé” dinner which will feature a three-course meal paired with local rosés.

DeLille Cellars is opening up the grounds of their beautiful chateau for a Rosé Picnic on Sunday, June 25. A ticket includes traditional BBQ fare and your first glass of rosé. Jump into some lawn games, stretch out on your picnic blanket or kick back in your lawn chair. Everyone is sure to enjoy a glass of DeLille Rosé and an afternoon at the Chateau!