Ros sales soar as hipsters and Gen Ys embrace wine
It was once the favoured tipple for gentle folk enjoying an afternoon soiree, but there has been a marked improvement in the sales of the wine varietal rosé — and it is due to an unexpected source.
A ringing endorsement from the much-maligned hipster is reported to be partly responsible for an estimated five per cent surge in sales over the past year, and producers are tailoring packaging to suit.
Gone are traditional pastels and images of quaint petals typically associated with the label, replaced by bold geometric patterns.
Kim Tyrer, CEO of Galafray Wines in Western Australia's great southern wine-making region, said the wine itself had also undergone a dramatic change.
"Rosés have really developed as a style of wine," Ms Tyrer said.
"They are no longer a cheap, sweet wine traditionally reserved for an entry level wine drinker. They come in different varieties, and the wine industry itself has been very innovative in promoting that."
Ms Tyrer said male drinkers had been quick to embrace the new improved rosé due in part to its easy drinkability.
"Australian men previously preferred the big bold reds or the Barossa-style shiraz," Ms Tyrer said.
"But thanks to the influence of Gen Ys, Millennials and the hipster market, who have all embraced rosé, they have driven interest which in turn has led to the rise in sales."
Australia embracing worldwide trend
Further afield, Australian Grape and Wine Authority general manager Stuart Barclay said the trend towards rosé echoed much of Europe, which had taken to it with much gusto.
"It's been seen as a year-round drink in Europe for quite some time," Mr Barclay said.
"When you consider the climate of Australia, it was only a matter of time before the same trend caught on here."
Ms Tyrer said the climate in Western Australia's great southern stood it in good stead to produce crackling rosé.
"There is a lot of rosé being made in the great southern and being done very well," Ms Tyrer said.
"Our growers have recognised it a variety that is now seriously recognised, and in turn they are really pushing themselves and tapping in to the trend."