From blush pink hues swirling around our glass, to deep tarocco blood orange shades and lightly sparkling candy floss pink, there isn’t a shade of Italian rose wine we don’t love. Once considered ‘cheap’ wine or something made using the lowest quality of leftover grapes, there is exciting movement afoot in the world of Italian wine rose. And if you like your wine all shades of pink, then you’re in for a treat! 

Keep reading to discover our ultimate guide to Italian rosato wine and some of our favorite bottles to drink in 2024.

cinino italian rose wine

What is rose wine in Italian?

First things first, rosé in Italian is called ‘rosato’. Rosé is the French word, so if you slip up on remembering the Italian word whilst you’re here, you won’t be met with completely blank stares, but just know that you’ll find ‘rosato’ written on Italian wine menus.

Whilst their color might be more similar to red than white, rosè wines have more in common with white wines. They are generally at their best whilst young whilst their fragrance and freshness will be at its top. 

How do you make rose wines?

There are a few different ways to make rosato:

1. Short maceration where the skins are left in contact with the grape juice for a few hours/days – most used method

2. Light pressing of red berried grapes

3. Using a blend of white and red grape juice together (but never mixing white and red wine together!)

Which regions make Italian rose wines?

The most commonly produced rose wine you’ll find here, is actually Italian rose sparkling wine! In particular, Lombardy is responsible with the production and request for Metodo Classico Rosè increasing hugely in recent years. In this regon, you’ll find delicious Franciacorta rose wine made using 25% pinot nero grapes, as well as sparkling rose from the Oltrepò Pavese region. Here the sparkling rose is called Cruasé and is deliciously creamy, effervescent and has a wonderful perfume of cherries and blood orange.

Still up north in Trentino-Alto Adige, you’ll find beautiful rose wines made from their indigenous grape ‘Lagrein’. Moving to the east coast in Veneto, Prosecco rose Italy is also becoming popular!

Heading south, Puglia is making wonderful rose Italian wines from negroamaro grapes, whilst in Calabria, you’ll want to look out for Cirò Rosato made from their gaglioppo grapes. 

8 Best Italian Rose Wines to try in 2024

Here’s our top tips for buying (and sipping) Italian rose wines like a pro in 2024:  

1. Rosato from Le Vigne di San Pietro – Veneto

This is a little market stall in the Testaccio Market and one of our favorites! That said, it’s only open during market hours (until 2.30pm or thereabouts). Corrado the owner offers wine tasting events every Saturday morning and stocks a fantastic range of mostly organic wines from all over Italy. You can also visit during the week and pop in for a glass of wine – he has a particular passion for Piemontese wines so this is a great place to try them if Piedmont isn’t in your travel plans. 

italian sparkling rose wine

2. Calafuria Rose from Tormaresca – Puglia

If you like your rosè peachy pink, this refreshing wine from Puglia is for you. Enjoy pink grapefruit, peaches, pomegranate and even lavender on the nose. It’s really fresh and vibrant and a little savoury when you taste it!

3. Le Rotaie Rosato from I Pastini – Puglia

Nestled in the Valle d’Itria or Itria Valley region of Puglia we find this lovely organic family-run winery. I Pastini make this vibrant rosato using Puglia’s indigenous Susumaniello grape. Expect a little darker pink color in the bottle – it’s a perfect summer wine.

4. ’61 Brut Rose from Berlucchi – Lombardy

Celebrating? Pop this one! This Italian sparkling rose wine is made using a blend of 60% pinot nero and 40% chardonnay grapes. The result? A bright pink bubbly! You can expect really elegant wild berry on the nose with aromas of pastry thanks to the metodo classico style of making this wine.

 

5. Perle Rose from Ferrari- Trentino Alto Adige

If you’ve never tried Italian rose from Trentino Alto Adige, try this one! It’s a sophisticated sparkling rose wine made from 80% pinot nero and 20% chardonnay.  Blush pink, enjoy notes of blood orange, redcurrants, plums and raspberries, as well as sugared almonds and pastry on the nose. It has a really long aftertaste and delicious red berry fruits on the palate. 

6. Rose from Planeta – Sicily

Let’s go to Italy’s islands and visit sun-drenched Sicily. Planeta is one of Sicily’s most well-known wineries and with good reason, even if it is quite commercial. This rose wine from Sicily is a pastel almost translucent pink. It’s super delicate wiht floral notes, wild strawberries, blackberries and honey melon on the nose. Made using a blend of 50% Nero d’Avola and 50% Syrah.

italian rosato

7. Etna Rosato from Pietradolce

It would be completely remiss of us to not go to Etna in this guide of incredible Italian rose wines. This is a lovely medium bodied wine grown from grapes on volcanic soil! It’s a pretty soft pink and full of mineral, floral and herbal notes.

8. Etna Rosato from Tenuta delle Terre Nere – Sicily

Because Mt Etna wines are just too good, we’ve included two to try in this guide! This organic Italian rose is made using Sicily’s indigenous Nerello Mascalese and full of mandarin, grapefruit and herbal notes. Yum! 

Inspired to try vibrant Italian rosato? Let us know in the comments your favorites too!