Rosés are all about fun, of course, but what's fun for wine geeks is the initial window into the previous vintage. 2018 was a vintage made from stuff of dreams: a frost-free Spring carried into perfect weather during flowering, then after an early July heat wave it was consistently mild with a cool bias. With nothing to force our hands it was ultimately one of the longest harvests we've had, providing uniformly excellent acidity and flavor ripeness at low sugars.
In this 2018 bottling, we have equal parts Syrah and Carignan with the same smidge of dry Riesling we've incorporated for years (for a little more twang and aromatic drive). Our approach with Rosé is uncompromising; only fruit grown to be Rosé is used (never any juice bled off from riper red wine lots), and its whole-cluster pressed into neutral French oak barrels just like all of our white wines. This ensures a thirst slaking and food-friendly feel, but with the textural richness and integration that barrel aging provides.
Expect intense and evocative aroma in this release. You're not too far out if you picture sitting under the blossoming cherry trees on the National Mall, peeling oranges while your companion tears into some good fresh bread. That segues into flavors of white raspberry, just ripe apricots and rainier cherries. You'll find a moment of cushion before this gains pitch into a zesty, mineral driven finish. Per usual for our Rosé, it paris well with just about anything (including nothing!) but it's worth pointing out that its fresh edge compliments richer flavors like Thai larb, whereas high-acid foods like ceviche will enhance the wine's underlying creaminess.