Summer is most definitely here, and for the past few years the drink of the season for wine-lovers is rosé. Sipping the delicate pink wine conjures images of warm summer afternoons, outdoor lunches in sidewalk bistros, and beach-side bonfires. This week on Beer Notes, we are going to show you that craft beer lovers can enjoy rose too, rose beers that is.
To capitalize on the popularity of rose wines, innovative brewers are making rosé craft beers using the relatively new practice of mixing foods into the brewing process, co-fermenting with a variety of grape skins or pulp used to make the wine. Occasionally they will use the wine itself in the brewing process. They might also ferment the beer in wine barrels to add complexity and a subtle wine flavor.
Rosé beers tend to have strong notes of fruit (usually berries) and lean into the realm of goses and sours. They walk the line between tart and sweet, although rose saisons and hefeweizens are also common. By making these craft beers that appeal to wine drinkers, it allows brewers to capture new patrons, pulling from a crowd that typically doesn’t choose craft beer.
According to Nielsen, in 2017, 40% of all rosé drinkers are millennial women. While millennials certainly are heavy on the craft beer scene, women are still an under-represented demographic that brewers can target.
There’s another advantage to drinking rosé style beers: lower alcohol content. Glasses of wine can be crisp and refreshing but also can pack a punch with around a 12.5% ABV, making them an ill-fated choice for extended periods of drinking. Rosé beers tend to run closer to 5%, setting them up as a perfect daytime drink.
According to Forbes, the hip and stylish are choosing roses. According to Shore Craft Beer, the hipper are drinking rose craft beer.
So with the onset of the summer heat, long lazy weekends and vacations on the horizon we suggest you try a rosé beer, it might just become your new favorite drink.
For beer notes, this is Anne Neely.