The answer is skin contact. When grapes are gently pressed (irrespective of type or colour) the juice runs clear. Wines receive their colour not from the juice but from extended contact with the skins once pressed. Rose wine is created by pressing red grapes and allowing them to soak for a short period of time, ranging from a few hours skin contact to a day or two. As the skins and juice soak together the colour from the skin bleeds into the juice.The winemaker ultimately has complete control over the colour of the wine and removes the red grape skins when the wine reaches the perfect colour. The juice is then allowed to ferment creating the delicious flavours later found in the finished wine. Nearly any red wine grape can be used to make rose wine - from Grenache to Cabernet Sauvignon.
The predominant flavours found in rosé wines are red fruits, flowers, citrus and melon, with a crunchy green flavour on the finish. The type of grape or process used to extricate the juices will greatly influence the flavour. For example, our Grenache based Chateau Deidiere Rosé from Provence will offer up classic flavours of honey dew melon, lemon and celery.