I’m probably the last one to have heard about and tasted Ruby Red Rosé Grapefruit wine, a grapefruit-infused rosé wine. But in researching this post, I found an article in Eater (by Emily Monaco) dating back to 2016 that called grapefruit rosé wine, “France’s latest obsession.”
Now it’s mine.
The backstory of rosé grapefruit wine
A homemade version of a grapefruit-infused rosé wine had been popular in Provence (Southern France) made with fresh grapefruit juice. Then one gutsy wine producer, Maison Castel, decided to bottle a convenient version of a rosé wine and pink grapefruit blend called “Very Pamp.”
The trendy drink caught on quickly in Paris and elsewhere in France. According to Eater, sales of the wine increased 125% between March 2012 and March 2013, with sales totaling 22 million bottles in that year alone. Other winemakers followed and some of these products have made their way to U.S. shores.
Although I just discovered this French import, I learned that Ruby Red Rosé Grapefruit wine has been around since 2015. Made with “natural flavors” (as opposed to syrups), this refreshing drink will appeal to anyone who loves the taste of ruby red grapefruit and just as importantly, isn’t a wine snob. And, to fall in love, you don’t even have to be a fan of rosé wines, per se.
What is Ruby Red Rose Grapefruit wine?
Ruby Red Rose Grapefruit wine is a blend of 80% Cotes du Provence Rosé and ruby red grapefruit juice. It is a non-vintage (NV) wine, meaning that the bottle you purchase will be a blend of rosés from different years.
The wine tastes light, smooth and fruity—not too tart, with a hint of citrus sweetness. Its bouquet is pure red grapefruit. The alcohol content is low, only 8.5% making it easy to drink.
An offspring of rosé
The popularity of rosé wines, in general, has soared because these wines are in sync with the more informal and accessible way people approach wine today. However, the wines have a long history: Rosé wines are said to be the oldest known wines and Provence is the oldest wine region, the place where the Greeks first planted grapevines some 2600 years ago.
Vins de Provence, the organization representing hundreds of these winegrowers and winemakers, works to educate consumers about the AOC—appellation d’origine contrôlée— wines of Provence. (AOC is the French equivalent of the DOC wines of Italy.)
This AOC designation assures that the wines come from vines grown in specific geographical areas in Provence and also sets standards for their quality. The three appellations that can produce AOC rosé wines are: Côtes de Provence, Coteaux d’Aix-en-Provence and Coteaux Varois en Provence.
As a marker of the growing popularity of rosé wines, the consumption of these wines has tripled over the past 25 years. Vins de Provence reports that in 2020, the region exported 60 million bottles of rosé wines, 40% of them to the U.S.
Once considered a summer wine, these versatile wines are now considered four-season drinks that are enjoyed as a before-dinner aperitif (either alone or as part of a cocktail), with meals (especially spicy foods) and after dinner.
Getting back to easy-to-drink Ruby Red Rosé Grapefruit
Ruby Red Rose Grapefruit wine is packaged in an attractive bottle that’s dimpled with a beautiful red grapefruit half on the label that almost looks like a flower.
You can see the pretty pink hue in the clear bottle and, of course, when poured. The bottle also offers the practical convenience of a screw-top if the contents can’t be finished in one sitting. As long as you and your guests enjoy grapefruit drinks, the inexpensive price and low alcohol content make it a perfect choice for outdoor parties or drinking with friends. It’s not an AOC wine, likely due to the grapefruit flavoring.
Rosé wines are always served chilled. Similarly, Ruby Red Rosé Grapefruit tastes best cold but can also be poured over ice. If you want to make a bubbly cocktail, you can top the wine off with some Prosecco or Champagne.
Home mixologists can also experiment making their own blends by mixing rosé wines with Crème de Pamplemousse rose, a pink grapefruit liqueur from the Loire Valley.
Where to buy rosé grapefruit wine
There are a number of different brands. We tried First Press Ruby Red Rosé Grapefruit. It is remarkably inexpensive (about $10 a bottle) and is available widely from local wine merchants, as well as Wegmans and Trader Joe’s. You can also purchase the wine online at Wine.com.
Previously on MoreTimeToTravel, about Italian rosé wines:
- The Rosautoctono Revolution: Italian Pink Wines Reimagined
- The Pink Wine Of Puglia: 6 Things to Know about Rosato
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