One in 10 wine drinkers assume rosé is made by mixing purple and white – it is not

The colour and flavour of most rosé, typically made from red grapes, is due to the early harvesting of the grapes and the brief period the crushed fruit’s skins remain in the juice. This type of wine can also be a byproduct of red winemaking – a process known as ‘saignee’.

While some winemakers in Australia and occasionally New Zealand make rosé from a blend of red and white wines, this practice is prohibited in the EU except for rose champagne.

According to a poll of 2,000 adults by M&S, there are many common misconceptions about wine. The survey found that 49% of rosé drinkers usually consume this variety of wine at the wrong temperature. Experts suggest that rosé should be served between 7–13°C and is best removed from the fridge 15 minutes beforehand.

Other common misconceptions highlighted in the first M&S #WineWorries ‘Mythbusting’ Report include the belief that red wine should never be refrigerated and that ice cubes should never be added to a glass.

Belinda Kleinig, a winemaker for the retailer, said: “It’s a common misconception that rose needs to be served ice cold. In fact, serving wine too cold can mute its fruity flavours and hide some of the aromas.

“The optimum temperature for enjoying rose is between 713C, meaning it’s best to take it out of the fridge about 15 minutes to half an hour before drinking so it isn’t overchilled.”

“That said, if it’s a particularly warm day there is absolutely nothing wrong with adding a few ice cubes to your glass of rose even wine experts do this themselves.”

The survey also revealed that twice as many people who sip on rosé prefer the paler shades (30%) over the darker ones (14%). And 10% are under the impression that paler rose equates to better quality, which isn’t necessarily true according to those in the know.

Just 15% of everyone polled correctly believe rosé can be used to make wine cocktails.
Just 15% of everyone polled correctly believe rosé can be used to make wine cocktails.

A mere 15% of participants correctly identified that rosé can be used in crafting wine cocktails. Meanwhile, only 18% acknowledged that it’s totally fine to pop ice cubes into a glass of rose to keep it chilled, even when the mercury rises.

The research further highlighted that just 17% of red wine drinkers would consider refrigerating their vino despite recommendations from connoisseurs that certain reds are enhanced by a slight chill. These include lighter, fruity varieties such as Pinot Noir, Grenache or Garnacha, Cinsault, and Found Marzemino hailing from Northeast Italy.

A quarter of those surveyed are clueless about how long an opened bottle of wine remains drinkable. Only 34% correctly believe that wine packaged in cans or boxes can match the quality of bottled wines.

And merely 28% have ventured to try wine from a pouch, which often has a longer shelf life post-opening compared to its bottled counterparts.

Conducted via OnePoll, the study also uncovered that while 29% are aware of orange wine, 8% mistakenly think it’s spiked with orange liqueur.

Only a mere 11% of people are familiar with Pet Nat – a sparkling wine that’s bottled before the initial fermentation process is complete.

Joseph Arthur, M&S senior wine buyer, clarified: “Despite what the name might suggest, orange wine has nothing to do with oranges. It’s a type of wine that’s made from white grapes that are fermented with their skins still on, just like when making red wine.”

“This gives it a beautiful amber colour and a unique flavour that’s a bit richer and more complex than regular white wine. It’s a great choice for anyone looking to try something different and exciting.”