Rosé Wines, Tasting Events

Comparing Two Vegan-Friendly Rosé from Tesco

The UK has seen some gorgeous weather recently; sandwiched by days of overcast clouds and a constant dreary drizzle, moments of pure sunshine have broken through. With the Easter weekend giving us all hope that summer might actually be approaching, many of us are starting to dream of evenings spent outside; watching the sun set, washing down summer salads with a chilled glass of wine.

A firm summer favourite has always been rosé. There’s something about the pretty pink hue, and the slightly sweet edge offsetting the dryness, that just screams “warm weather and sunshine- ready”. Its easy-drinking nature and ability to match pretty much any food make it a great choice for a casual evening tipple or lavish Sunday afternoon. I could think of no better way to spend this Easter Sunday than catching up with friends for a picnic, comparing two vegan rosé from Tesco. 

Here are two Tesco vegan wines for under £10: Oriel Coteaux Provence Rosé, and Tesco Finest Provence Rose.

Vegan Wines From Tesco: Comparing Two Provence Rosé
Same country, same grapes, even the same winemaker: but how would these rosé wines compare?


Comparing Tesco Rosé Wines 

Having to opportunity to compare two vegan wines that are similar is good practise for wine-lovers, as it helps highlight the nuances of flavour and quality –  it can also be super interesting to see how different wines made in the same region, using the same grapes, can differ so greatly. These are both Provence Rosé (the home of French Rosé, and the oldest wine-making region in France) and made by the same wine maker: Thomas Castet. 

These vegan rosé are a blend of Grenache, Syrah/Shiraz, and Cinsault. Grenache adds structure and fruitiness, and Cinsault (“san-soo”) adds softness and bouquet, helping to balance the heftier Shiraz grape. Before tasting, I expected them to exhibit flavours of red summer fruits, with some tart berries to prevent them from being cloyingly sweet (the mark of a good Provence Rosé). 


Oriel Coteaux Provence Wine Review

Oriel Rosé Tesco Vegan Friendly
Not so easy-drinking: the Oriel fell a little flat during tasting


The cheaper rosé option (£7.50), Oriel is described as a “wonderfully crisp and fruity wine.” Alas, if I’m honest this fell short, especially when pitted against a better rosé from the same supermarket. The friends who I shared this with liked it – until they tried the other bottle. Unfortunately, I don’t feel this has as much fruit as anticipated, and is acidic and sharp rather than dry and balanced. All in all, I was glad to have a second rosé suitable for vegans readily available. But, as always, another wine-lover may fall head over heels for it! And rosé from Provence is not my favourite style of this summery pink wine. 

Important Note: this wine is labelled as ‘Vegetarian’ on the wine profile page on the Tesco website – scroll to the bottom of the post for the clarification email I received from Tesco – this wine IS vegan-friendly. 


Tesco ‘Finest’ Provence Rosé Wine Review

Comparing Tesco Vegan Rosé
Nice, fruity, balanced – a bargain for just a £1 more!


Surprisingly, Tesco’s premium rosé was just £1 more than the Oriel – but it was distinctively better. Light and fresh, this offered juicy strawberries alongside a little tart redcurrant to keep it dry, as is the character of rosé from Provence. Really rather nice, actually. For easy summer drinking, it’s a well-priced vegan rosé and one that I would rely on for a spontaneous picnic in the park. 


Coteaux Varoix en Provence vs Côtes de Provence

I wonder, actually, if region has anything to do with the disparity in quality; not just because Tesco’s Finest wine is an AOC (region-certified) wine and Oriel is not. According to a little internet research, Coteaux Varoix en Provence is surrounded by mountains; this means the vines enjoy less of the quintessential Mediterranean climate of warm summers and mild winters. The region actually experiences some very harsh winters in comparison to the rest of the region, and grapes are usually harvested 2 months later here. Perhaps this explains the lack of fruit, and slight bitterness.

My recommendation would be to ensure Oriel Coteaux is always served chilled, and with food; it will no doubt offer more flavour when paired with a nice tangy or fruity summer dish. Maybe a mango-lime quinoa bowl, or strawberry and basil balsamic salad? …

Of course, the same applies for the Côtes de Provence. Rosé is always best chilled.


Food Pairings for Rosé Wines

When it comes to food pairings, rosé is a very versatile style of wine. Recently, for example, I paired a pink Cava with dark chocolate truffles, vegan smoked salmon, and glazed beetroot & herbed cheese crostini – all on the same evening! Sweet, tangy, and a little earthy, glazed beetroot could soften a rosé that is too acidic. 


Glazed Beetroot and Rosemary Toast [Vegan Starter Ideas]
Simple Vegan Appetiser Idea: Slow Cooked Beetroot, Fresh Herbs, and Vegan Cream Cheese Toasts


The chocolate and rosé pairing comes HIGHLY recommended, I can assure you! The dairy-free truffle recipe used for these little beauties can be adapted to make vegan Ferrero Rocher; chocolate, hazelnuts and rosé. Does it get better? 

After all, Rosé and hazelnuts make a good wine and food match – especially for vegans, as there’s no prep involved for this natural, protein-packed snack. This particular nut is only slightly sweet, with a bit more earthiness than other nuts like cashews, making them a good match for Rosé.  Those interested in learning more about nuts and wine in general can ready my handy guide here


Dairy-free Chocolate Truffle Recipe
Dairy-free Chocolate Truffles Using Coconut Cream and Vegan Chocolate


Tesco Oriel Rosé Vegan-Friendly 

Given the demand for vegan wines is a relatively new phenomenon, supermarkets and wine merchants don’t always have the most up-to-date information on their sites; Oriel appears when you search for vegan-friendly rosé, but on the wine’s page states vegetarian. After emailing Tesco Customer service, they have confirmed it is suitable for vegans (but a similar wine is not): 

Oriel Vegan Friendly


Happy summer drinking, everyone!


Jess x




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