Flavor Insight: Rose

August 16, 2019
Flavor Ingredients Trends
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Before vanilla was the standard sweet flavor for food and drink items, rose was the go-to flavor used in beverages and desserts of all kinds. Up until the 1800s, many pie, cake and cookie recipes called for a dash of rosewater. Still today, those foods remain the main items featuring rose flavor. Used mainly as an aromatic component, rose is a delicate flavor that has become familiar to consumers around the world. Let’s take a closer look at the uses of rose on menus, social media mentions and global new products.

Rose Social Listening Summary

Check out FONA’s social listening analysis on rose, covering the previous six months. Rose enjoys 72% positive perception.

  • 7 mentions per second

  • 78% female as the key consumer voice.

  • Popular Hashtags: #water #fragrance #flower #natural #syrup

  • Key Consumer Interests: 1. Pop Culture 2. Humor & Satire 3. Food & Drink

  • Top Posts/Recipes: Twitter: @healthyish “Rose is the wellness ingredient in everything right now”
    Instagram: @saffronandroseinc “Come try our new floral line featuring both pink and white rose ice creams”

On Genius Kitchen, formerly food.com, 592 recipes appear when you search rose. Recipes include raspberry scones with rose water, pareve chocolate sorbet, rose water soda, summer fruit salad, rose water and cardamom custard, exotic spice cookies with ginger, orange blossom pancakes, rose cafe muffins and more.

Consumer Perception

When asked about their perception, consumers polled view rose flavored products as more fun and refreshing than other floral flavors.

Rose Petal Confit

Brand Favols describes this product as combining the sweetness of sugar cane with the delicate and subtle fragrance of rose petals. It can be used to accompany a desert, tea, or with goat cheese. The product was voted "Best French Specialty."

Rose On The Menu: Q4 2017-Q4 2018

314 rose mentions on the menu

Fine dining and casual dining are the top segments, with beverage and dessert as the top two menu sections with the most rose flavored items.


  • Strawberry-Rose Agua Fresca is offered at Death & Company bar located in New York. This bar serves a refresher with strawberries, mint leaves, lime juice, agave nectar and rose water. This can be an alcoholic or non-alcoholic beverage by request.

  • Rose, Strawberry & Pistachio White Chocolate Bark with Pink Sea Salt is served at Mariposa café on Michigan Ave in Chicago. This menu item is served with coffee, tea or other beverages as a snack item and features rose petals and rose water in the recipe.

  • Wild Rose Petal Jam is made by The Flying Biscuit Café in Atlanta, Georgia. Rose Petals are added to water and brought to a simmer. Lemon juice and sugar are then added. The petals become like a candy texture in the solution. This is served on different bakery items in the café.

  • Coconut Rose Vegan Cheesecake is a mini treat that is made using dried rose petals and rosewater essence. These include other feature ingredients such as cashews, coconut water, essence, and desiccated coconut as well as vanilla extract. This dessert is served at the Blossoming Lotus in Portland, Oregon.

Rose Global New Product Introductions: 2018-2019

448 rose flavored new product introductions

Asia Pacific is the top global region for rose new product introductions.
Tea is the top product sub-category globally.
Lychee is the top flavor paired with rose globally.

Top 5 Rose Product Categories
1. Hot Beverages
2. Sugar & Gum Confectionery
3. Dairy
4. Bakery
5. Alcoholic Beverages

Product Examples:

Dark Chocolate with Rose Petals: This artisan quality chocolate is gluten free and is made with cocoa lyophilized strawberries, delicate rose petals and lyophilized rose petals with 70% cocoa content. |UK

Original Rose Flavored Chicken Breast Jerky: This product from The Three Squirrels Company is made using selected fresh and tender chicken breast and is high in protein. It also comes with a lozenge candy included in the package. | South Africa

Pomegranate and Rose Flavored Lightly Infused Wine Based Drink: Amiston Bay Infusions has added this product to their line of alcoholic beverages. This product is a blush-pink infusion with a sweet floral scent that also has zesty notes of deep pomegranate. | South Africa

Rose North America New Product Introductions: 2017-2019

30 rose flavored new product introductions

North America accounts for 5.4% of all rose flavored new product introductions.
Tea is the top product sub-category in North America for rose flavored new products.
Strawberry is the top flavor paired with rose.

Top 5 Rose Product Categories
1. Hot Beverages
2. Alcoholic Beverages
3. Sugar & Gum Confectionery
4. Water
5. Other Beverages

Product Examples:

Chevre Rose Peppercorn Goat Milk Cheese: This product is made with cultured and pasteurized goat milk, salt, vegetables and spices. |USA

  • 12% of consumers polled said they’d possibly buy this product, significantly underperforming against subcategory.

Rosé Dry Cider: Austin Eastciders Rose Dry Cider tastes of crisp apple and rose petals. This product contains 5% alcohol by volume. |USA

  • 32% of consumers polled said they’d possibly buy this product, outperforming against subcategory.

Organic Strawberry + Rose Flavored Water: This product is described as an alkaline spring water sourced from an artisan spring. It is kosher and organic certified and features the tastes of lemon, strawberry and ginger with fragrant rose notes. |Canada

The Takeaways

Aromatic and delicate, the taste of rose is a unique addition to a variety of food and beverage. The usage of the flower as a tasting component in various food products such as bakery and confection has increased in recent years. However, developers continue to remain in the predictable space of sweet flavor pairings. Could your brand push rose to the next level by coupling it with a savory flavor or using it in a new and different product area?

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Let FONA’s market insight and research experts get to work for you. Translate these trends into bold new ideas for your brand. Increase market share and get to your “what’s next.” Our technical flavor and product development experts are also at your service to help meet the labeling and flavor profile needs for your products to capitalize on this consumer trend. Let’s mesh the complexities of flavor with your brand development, technical requirements and regulatory needs to deliver a complete taste solution.

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Sources in full report