After a bone-chilling winter, few things are more appealing than dining alfresco, relishing the thawing effects of 72-and-sunny weather—and this scene just wouldn't be complete without a glass of rosé in hand. Seeing as we're ready to stock up on the refreshing pink beverage that's become synonymous with spring, we tapped the experts to find out which budget-friendly bottles we should be swilling this season.
Ahead, sommeliers and wine directors reveal the best cheap rosé wines that taste much more expensive than their modest price tags might suggest. Spanning a vibrant bottle from Provence that's ideal for sipping at casual gatherings to a canned (yes, canned) variety that's perfect for toting to outdoor picnics, these are the affordable rosé wines the pros pour up come spring. The best part? Every wine on this list is $15 or less.
"We've poured this wine by the glass at Cote since the day we opened, almost two years ago," divulges Victoria James, beverage director of Cote in New York City. "Why? Because it is everything you want in a glass of rosé—lean, racy, but still with some texture and savory qualities. There is nothing it doesn't pair with!"
Ben Teig, wine director at Redbird in Los Angeles, California, also recommends this wine. It's "one of the palest rosés that you will find due to the only color being from the first press without skin contact, he notes. "On the palate, there are wonderful notes of ripe peaches with a nice dry finish that isn’t too tart."
"A more fruit-driven rosé that is fun and easy-drinking," recommends James. "The best value in Burgundy, for sure!"
"Pronounced CHAW-CO-LEE, this slightly fizzy Basque country pink wine is a picnic must," explains James. "The bit of effervescence makes it incredibly versatile on the table (or picnic blanket)."
"Just a stones throw away from the ocean in the small town of Toulan, Clos Cibonne has become one of the most iconic rosé producers in the world," explains Ryan Bailey, wine director of NoMad Los Angeles.
"Known for wines that are not only age-worthy but also quite often hard to get Clos Cibonne started buying fruit from their three neighbors to make the Tentations rosé," notes Bailey. "A blend of 40% Cinsault, 40% Grenache, 10% Syrah and 10% Tibouren, a grape varietal you don't see every day."
"This wine simply transports you to one of the most beautiful places in the world, where orchard blossoms seem to be everywhere, rustic farms dating back centuries are still lived in and the view of the Alpilles is painted under the sky," Bailey tells MyDomaine.
"In the bottle is a wine that is so lively and fresh that it truly shows the benefits of a family who has been farming organically for more than 50 years," the wine director explains. "Aromatics of rose petals, meadow flowers, and white peach notes make for a wine that is the perfect match for a grilled vegetable salad."
This is "an awesome mineral driven rosé, a little blood orange and peach flavors," recommends Amy Racine, wine director of John Fraser Restaurants. "Plus it makes you feel good, as it's one of the few carbon-neutral wineries out there!"
This is "one of my favorite rosés right now," confesses Racine. "Very elegant and citrus driven. The grapes are also all organic!"
"This is an elegant yet savory rosé, with fresh strawberry, pineapple, peach and orange zest notes making this a fantastic value that should be on your shopping list," recommends Jessica Altieri, sommelier at the Four Seasons Palm Beach, Florida.
“Whether it’s in the restaurant or casually dining with friends, I'm always looking for wines that outperform their price point. For something to bring to your next barbecue cookout look to Austria," recommends Andrew Pattison, wine director of Sushi Note in Sherman Oaks, California.
"I love to serve the Gobelsburg Cistercian rosé when I'm hosting friends during the summer," says the wine director. "Made from a blend of native Austrian red varietals Zweigelt and St. Laurent, it's light and fresh enough to pair with salads but the darker fruit tones and subtle spicy character you get from the St. Laurent make it a fine fit with anything coming off of the grill."
"If you're looking for something lighter, but don't want to pay Provence prices, look for the J. Mourat OVNI rosé from the Loire Valley," says Pattison. "Made from 100% Grolleau Gris, this is a wine that will delight the wine geeks and neophytes in your group equally.
"It’s like swimming weightlessly through strawberry shortcake clouds, and I absolutely love it," confesses Pattison. "It's gotten to a point where I buy it anytime I see it in stock at any wine store because production is limited and it usually goes fast."
“I love this sexy, fruity rosé from Cotes de Provence because it is perfect for summertime patio gatherings that don't require something to pontificate on," says Roger Bissell, sommelier at Mille Lire in Dallas, Texas. "It has notes of gooseberry, strawberry, and white peach. It has a vibrancy that refreshes your palate enticing you to keep revisiting.”
“Salvatore Ferragamo's first foray into making rosé with Sangiovese over-delivers in its price category and is one of the most food-friendly you will find," recommends Bissell. "It has a beautiful bright pink color with perfectly balanced acidity, fresh fruits, flowers, and salinity. One of the finest examples of rosé coming from Tuscany within its class that pairs with most dishes you will find on your summer plate.”
“The vineyard that this wine comes from, situated between craggy mountain ranges and the Mediterranean sea, dates back to the late 1800s and is planted with native Corsican grape varietals of Niellucciu and Sciaccarellu," says Angela Gargano, director of wine and spirits and lead sommelier at Triple Creek Ranch in Darby, Montana. "It’s everything you could ask for in a rosé; crisp minerality with vibrant stone fruit and the salinity of a sea breeze. One of my favorite wine regions in the world, Corsican wines are also always tremendous value.”
“The awesome folks at Scribe Winery in Sonoma created Cara’s, co-founder of DECANTsf, new favorite canned rosé, the Una Lou Rosé, to honor the birth of their baby girl," says Simi Grewal, certified sommelier DECANTsf in San Francisco, California. "Not all canned wine is created equal, and this one is premium quality on a budget."
"Floral, juicy, with exotic fruits, for about $10 per can (which is equal to a half-bottle) it is perfect to take to the park, sneak into the movies, or share with a friend," says Grewal. "And that money goes to a good cause. A percentage of proceeds will go to two organizations that support youth, food and agricultural education at the Edible Schoolyard and The Center for Land-Based Learning.”
“Azul Y Garanza makes a delicious and super affordable Spanish rosé from the area of Navarra," offers Cara Patricia, advanced sommelier at DECANTsf in San Francisco, California. "100% organic Garnacha (aka Grenache), this bottle is slightly savory with white pepper and crunchy red berries. This is what Simi and I refer to as a "porch pounder", meaning that we will probably go through half a case while chilling on the stoop on a Sunday with our girlfriends. The Azul Y Garanza comes in a liter and is only around $15 on DECANTsf's shelves.”
“When you are looking for a great quality inexpensive rosé, look for wines from less obvious places," recommends Gregory Stokes, advanced sommelier of Veritas in Columbus, Ohio. "Provence is good, but there is also an ocean of questionable labels to sort through at lower price points. One of my current favorite rosés is Villa Wolf Pinot Noir Rosé from the Pfalz region in Germany. It has the beautiful purity of fruit that you hope for in a rosé but also has this amazing structure with a clean zippy finish that makes it very refreshing.”
“This syrah-based rosé from 14 Hands Winery embodies the essence of summer, with aromas of strawberry, raspberry, and watermelon," says sommelier Samantha Capaldi. "Just released in cans earlier this year, it’s an easy sipper, perfect to grab for picnics and beach outings. 14 Hands are known for its smooth easy drinking varietals at an unmatched value, and this wine doesn’t disappoint with refreshing flavors of melon and strawberries followed closely by a kick of citrus in the finish.”
“This elegant and dry rosé, crafted with French techniques in mind, is 72% Syrah, 28% Merlot and 100% delicious," recommends Leah Adint, red winemaker at Chateau Ste. Michelle Winery. "This fresh and lively wine offers bright aromas of watermelon and raspberry with flavors of wild strawberry, citrus zest, and hints of melon. Its beautiful pale pink color is sure to stand out during all your spring and summer celebrations and can be enjoyed on its own or with a variety of foods, from light pasta to grilled fish and more.”
“This unique rosé of pinot noir is so fresh and perfect for spring with aromas of nectarine, rose petal, and melon," offers Gary Horner, winemaker at Erath Winery. "Its fruitful flavors pair perfectly with grilled salmon, making it a great compliment to your first spring meal enjoyed on the grill with family and friends. Erath’s Oregon wines are fruit-forward and this rosé is ideal for effortless sipping finishing both bright and satisfying.”
This "rosé from the most eastern part of the Loire Valley over-delivers for its price," notes Ben Teig, wine director at Redbird in Los Angeles, California. "On the nose, this wine explodes with bright, tart red fruit like raspberries. The vines are only a few hundred meters from the Atlantic, which imparts a great crisp, saline finish."
"From the indigenous Mencia grape in Northwest Spain, this wine has a bright strawberry nose reminiscent of red licorice," says Teig. "On the palate, it starts with a bright and fruity strawberry note that dazzles the palate and has a nice crisp, tart finish.
"One producer that hasn’t increased their prices while their quality continues to improve is Bodegas Olivares, with their Finca Hoya de Santa Ana Rosado, located in the southeastern region of Jumilla, ES," says Bill Giering, wine director at The Rose Venice in Venice, California.
"Olivares combines monastrell (mourvedre) and garnacha (grenache), harvested from vines with over one-hundred years of age at high elevation, to produce a delicious, juicy, vibrant orange/pink wine with notes of strawberry, cranberry, and blood orange, that finishes dryly with a hint of white pepper," notes Giering.