Lunch water. Sunshine juice. Call it what you will, nothing says summer drinking quite like rosé. And whether you like it barely there, pale as can be, or bordering on a straight-up cold red wine, or even with a hint of orange, if you’re thinking pink, this collection of gems from our panel of drinks experts has the rosé for you.

Do yourself a favour and take this list into a good bottle-o, load up the boot, and consider your fridge stocked and your summer sorted.

2022 What-a-Melon Rosé, Pyrenees
“Every time I think the craze is over, rosé season comes around again, but thankfully we’ve never been more spoilt for choice. I find myself reaching for more food-friendly, textural and savoury styles like Owen Latta’s ‘What-a-Melon’ from Western Victoria. This is no average pink drink: it’s full-flavoured, mouth-filling and super versatile with lots of food options.” Penny Vine, Cutler & Co

2022 The Wanderer Rosé, Yarra Valley
“Savoury and textural Yarra Valley dry rosé: lunchtime in a glass.” Jayden Ong, Jayden Ong Winery and Cellar Bar

2023 Little Reddie ‘Skinzies’, Macedon
“Pat Underwood makes this for us and we sell it by the glass or by the litre to take away. This vintage is ridiculously good. Think north-Italian skin-contact pinot gris, with lovely silky and chalky mouthfeel, balanced out by plump amaro-like dried red fruits.” Simon Denman, Old Palm Liquor, Neighbourhood Wine

 2022 A&C Ainsworth Special Reserve Rosé, Pyrenees
“Bar Merenda purveyors Andy and Claire Ainsworth have come out with some of the most complex and absolutely delicious rosé in the country. It ain’t fruity, it ain’t sweet, instead they aim for more savoury characters which are still a pleasure for your summer drinking. Clos Cibonne from down the road – what more could you want?” Alex Pineo, Poodle

“I can’t get enough of Andy and Clare Ainsworth’s Special Reserve Rosé. Made from cabernet from Shays Flat vineyard, it spent some time in amphora and showcases how great that site is. Savoury, textural and a joy to drink.” Bronwyn Kabboord, Du Fermier

“Andy and Claire Ainsworth are the bohemian bon vivants behind Bar Merenda. I spent a lot of time drinking and learning from Andy, a man with a soldier’s passion for wine who has held the fort at some of the best wine bars in the world. And it shows in this reserve release of the A&C Rosé; a nod to the sun-kissed and spicy southside French rosés of Domaine Tempier, Les Vins du Cabanon and Clos Cibonne.” Mahmood Fazal, investigative reporter, wine writer

“Andy knocks it out of the park with this serious, and seriously savoury, amphora-aged rosé from certified organic fruit. Bravo!” Jeremy Shiell, Saeke Wines

“An extended-élevage cabernet rosé with six months in terracotta that is singing!”  Luke Skidmore, Tipo 00

Dominique Portet Rosé, Yarra Valley
“Ticks all the boxes; from the Provence-like colour to the refreshing yet still well-rounded mouthfeel. It pairs perfectly with friends over a long alfresco lunch during summer.” Nick Brown, Saints Collective

2022 Beyond the Glass ‘Ruby’ Rosé, Heathcote
Rosé with texture and finesse.” Callie Poole, Reine and La Rue

Happy Sack King Valley Rosé
“This has the park or the beach written all over it: it’s 1.5 litres of crisp, delicious rosé in a handy go-anywhere sack.” Paul Ghaie, Blackhearts & Sparrows

Chalmers Rosato, Heathcote
“I’m on the record as saying I find most rosé boring, but this blend of aglianico, nero d’Avola and sagrantino is anything but! It straddles the perfect balance of savoury and textured with a fresh dollop of fruit.” Mel Gilchrist, Wine with Meg + Mel

2021 Bandicoot Run Lucid Dreams, Gippsland
“I love this rosé so much. A mix of pinot, tempranillo and viognier made by a young couple, Adriana D’Amico and Al Johnson, who are super lovely. It’s bright and refreshing without being an acid nightmare, with really pretty floral notes along with strawberry and peach. The 2021s might be getting hard to find but I imagine the 2022s will be out before the weather gets too balmy.” Pete Baxter, Hope St Radio

Fighting Gully Road 2022 Rosé, Beechworth and Alpine Valleys
“A dry, savoury, and food-friendly style made from sangiovese and aglianico, it’s mid-weighted and genuinely refreshing and will no doubt it will find its way into the Esky at more than a couple of barbecues this summer.” Mark Protheroe, Paradise Valley Hotel

Scion Rosé, Rutherglen
“Made from durif, a grape with a long history in Rutherglen, this is a rosé with some savouriness and character, but it’s still delicate and immediately appealing. The durif is picked early to keep it fresh, and then it’s wild-fermented – great drinking!” Michael Smith, The Recreation

2022 Charles Oliver ‘Nemo’ Syrah Rosé, Landsborough Valley
“At Chauncy we’ve been developing a section of the wine list that we affectionately call jus du jardin – wines that we love to drink while wandering around the garden – and this is a perfect example. A 100-per-cent syrah rosé with minimal sulphur, there’s nothing lost in this moreish rosé. Textural, with fruit and spice, it’s a fun addition to your summer drinks list that’s sure to impress.” Antonina Heymanson, Chauncy

“A very smart rosé. It’s savoury, but it coats the palate. It has a light grip and gentle creaminess from 11 months on full lees in the barrel with no fining or filtering. In other words, perfect summer drinking.” Jen Latta, Winespeake

Bertrand Bespoke Rosé 2022, Heathcote       
“You’ll find Gilles Lapalus’s fingerprints on many excellent rosé wines from Victoria from his time developing the Sutton Grange brand as its first winemaker. In this cuvée, which I’m proud to have in my portfolio at Dearth of a Salesman, the blend of mourvèdre and nebbiolo, co-fermented and aged on the skins of greco and fiano grapes, results in a wine that has more structure without losing its essential summer gluggability.” Wiremu Andrews, Dearth of a Salesman

2022 Cre Rosé, Yarra Valley
“We love cabernet rosé and we love our mates at Fin and Cre. The 2022 Cre rosé is delicious, and a fixture in our fridge door.” Tom Belford, Bobar 

Il Pinko Rosé, Cobaw Ridge
“Cobaw Ridge’s Il Pinko is a real delight and the perfect summer rosé. Made from cool-climate syrah, and fermented in qvevri (Georgian-style amphoras), it’s delicate, textural and has a great mineral acidity. It’s also just beautiful clean drinking, refreshing for a poolside (or beachside) bottle in the afternoon sun. Everyone raves about Josh Cooper, but his folks make some spectacular booze too.” Emily Kinsman, ECK Wines

 “Il Pinko Rosé is consistently delicious – a cool-climate rosé with an electric colour and palate to match.” Loïque Allain, Dilworth & Allain

 2021 Fallow ‘Pic Nic!’, Yarra Valley
A weighty Yarra Valley merlot rosé with a lick of sweetness, but importantly with the acidity to balance it. The rich fruit and a touch of tannin helps bridge that magical gap between rosé and chilled red.” Josh Begbie, Brico

Eastern Peake Taché Rosé, Ballarat
“The Taché pinot rosé that Owen Latta makes is from his family’s vineyard, Eastern Peake, which is meticulously farmed, low yielding and about as cold as it gets, and this wine is just brilliant every vintage.” Andy Ainsworth, Bar Merenda, A&C Ainsworth