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Ask An Indie: Hal Wilson thinks pink

Published:  24 July, 2019

Everyone may be banging on about orange wine at the moment, but let’s face it there’s only one colour that’s flying of the shelves at this time of year – pink.

Supermarket shelves and the fridges of independent merchants are dressed in pink all summer long as the demand for rosé continues to rise.

We caught up with Hal Wilson, co-owner of Cambridge Wine Merchants to get his top rosé tips. Can an indie stock too many pink wines, which are best, and what about fizz?

“Paler = popular, that's the fashion,” says Wilson straight off the bat.

While he’s not dismissing the character and appeal of darker rosés, he’s seen first-hand which bottles customers reach for and it’s a case of the paler the better.

“I don't think it matters how many you stock, so long as they all look like Provence wine. Essentially go for the palest wine that can call itself rosé, and being in clear glass is pretty important too,” he adds.

The pale pink trend began in Provence, but you can’t just stock rosé wines from one part of France. Wilson believes a mix is important and that when buying and presenting rosés to customers you shouldn’t be too precious about certain styles and grape varieties.

“Anything with Pinot Grigio on it sells, even if you may not want to crow about it,” he says. Wilson’s range encompasses a couple of Italian rosés as well as a number of French provençale -style wines, a pink Rioja and a handful of bits from the New World.

On a sparkling tip Cambridge Wine Merchants sells six pink fizzes and is gearing up for the launch of rosé Prosecco when that finally hits the market.

“It will be interesting to see what happens when rosé Prosecco arrives,” says Wilson.