Rosé: The Colour of Summer


Provence: France's leading rosé wine producer

Rosé production –similarly to other wines - is not governed or defended by any legal texts, so the controversy that arose some time ago over mixing whites and reds is far from over. Considered as somewhat inferior to its red and white peers for many years, rosé has now become the colour of summer and consumer enthusiasm has prompted wine makers to make genuine progress and vie for excellence. Today's choice of thirst-quenching pale ('grey'), fruity and dry rosés is not only vast, but first-rate too.

Apero time !

Cellar of 'rosé'


Rosé is the oldest-known wine and first appeared on Mediterranean shores well over a thousand years ago. The study of Greek and Egyptian representations shows that pale wines resembling rosés were elaborated from crushed or pressed grapes, without maceration (which is the basis of red wine). Monks were also fans of this 'vinum clarum', the ancestor of Bordeaux's Clairet rosé. The Renaissance too had a taste for this wine that was neither white nor red, as reflected in the details of carafes and glasses shown in Flemish and Dutch paintings. Reds only started to gain ground over rosés in the 18th century. After the phylloxera crisis, the vineyards were replanted with red grape varieties and although rosés had reigned over the wine world for centuries, tastes switched very clearly to red. Rosé wine fell more or less into disrepute on the wine market, and has only won recognition again fairly recently. But today, rosé is the word! Consumption has tripled in the last 20 years and represented one-third of all wine consumption in 2013. Friendly-priced, thirst-quenching, varied, easy and pretty, rosé has brought a wind of change to our dinner tables.

A rose or a 'rosé' ?

"When wine is open you have to drink it- especially if it's good"
-Marcel Pagnol

Wine was first grown in Provence – France's biggest rosé producer – by the Phocean Greeks, who planted vines all the way into Marseille. It would be fair to say that the city, then called Massilia, was born thanks to wine. Grape seeds have recently been found during archaeological digs in the Bourse quarter. The local vineyards offer up magnificent and varied landscapes: Provence's Wine Route spans stunning natural sites such as Sainte Victoire mountain and the hills of Bandol, overlooking the translucent waters of the Côte Bleue coast. Wine is as intrinsic to Provence as thyme and rosemary. Vines thrive throughout the region on stony ground, rubbing shoulders with olive groves. In fact, wine and olive oil are frequently grown together! Wine and gastronomy have also taken a cultural turn in Provence in recent years, with many high-level artistic events hosted by the local vineyards including 'Art & Wine in the Var' at various domains, Opera Evenings at Château Thuerry and Art & Architecture at Château La Coste, cleverly combining pleasures of the palate and the mind... Rosé wines also have pride of place in the South simply because local dishes, such as lamb en croûte, stuffed vegetables, sea bass with fennel, grilled sardines and artichoke barigoule, were made for it…. Whether fish or meat, the Mediterranean's aromatic cuisine is always better paired with pink. The region is home to some rare grape varieties too: the Cinsault grape grown in Cassis offers up pale, fruity and delicate rosés, while Grenache and Mourvèdre grapes add structure and character a little further down the road in Les-Baux-de-Provence. Provence's salmon-tinted rosés are light, fruity, tender, racy and aromatic, pairing perfectly with the flavours of the Med.

Things to do

Château Gassier

Château Gassier


Discover an exceptional wine region by paying a visit to Château Gassier and its cellar, open for sales and tastings! Château Gassier’s 40 hectares of organically farmed land enjoy a unique location, at the base of the Sainte-Victoire mountain.

Le sentier des vignerons de Puyloubier

Le sentier des vignerons de Puyloubier


Départ : devant la Cave coopérative. Petit mais costaud, cet itinéraire en bordure du Grand Site St Victoire vous fera découvrir un patrimoine naturel et culturel entretenu par l'homme depuis la préhistoire. Les sources abondantes dans la région lui on permis de s'installer au pied de l'une…

Les jardins du Château Val Joanis
Park / garden

Les jardins du Château Val Joanis


Au sud du Parc Naturel Régional du Luberon, le Château Val Joanis se situe sur l'emplacement d'une ancienne villa romaine. Son jardin à la française créé en 1978, est composé de terrasses rassemblant potager, verger et fleurs. De caractère provençal, il dévoile également une oliveraie,…

The entire agenda



Read more

The Feria

Read more

Marcel Pagnol

Read more
More inspirations

Serving tourism

Bouches-du-Rhône Tourisme is a non-profit ‘association loi 1901’ organisation.It is entrusted by the Département (or regional council) to promote tourism in Bouches-du-Rhône while respecting the environment and local residents, and guaranteeing visitors a top-quality experience.

The best of the destination

So that everyone’s hopes and tastes are catered for, Bouches-du-Rhône Tourisme promotes must-see destinations which take visitors off the beaten track, using its deep understanding of the area and its neutral role as a non-profit organisation.