Prosecco dresses up in pink with rosé category

National Prosecco Week, an effort by Italy’s Prosecco producers to promote their wines, is July 19-25. These types of promotional efforts are pretty common, but this particular one is at least somewhat noteworthy because for the first time it will include Prosecco rosé.

A number of Prosecco producers have been making a pink wine for some years, taking advantage of the popularity of rosé. But they weren’t allowed to label it as Prosecco. The Prosecco DOC Consortium decided last August to allow wineries to use the designation and set the rules for rosé production.

The rosé must be made from at least 85 percent glera (the main grape used in white Prosecco), with the remainder being pinot noir (pinot nero in Italy). Like white Prosecco, the rosé gets its sparkle from a secondary fermentation in pressurized tanks called autoclaves, rather than from the traditional method used in Champagne. To be called Prosecco, the wines must be made in a defined area of northeastern Italy, not far from Venice.

I’ve tasted a few Prosecco rosés in recent months, and all have had an “extra dry” level of sweetness, which generally means the wines will taste barely off-dry. That was the case with both of the recommended wines that follow.

The 2020 Famiglia Pasqua Extra Dry Prosecco Rosé ($18) has a pale salmon color and zippy flavors of red fruit and lemon.

Another good choice, the 2020 Fiol Extra Dry Prosecco Rosé ($19), isn’t quite as zippy, but it has very pretty, delicate red berry fruit. Both wines provide plenty of festive refreshment for summer, whether it’s Prosecco Week or not.