2009 Vines on the Marycrest Summertime

  • WHO: Vines on the Marycrest
  • WHAT: 68% Grenache, 15% Mourvedre, 9% Syrah, 8% Zinfandel
  • WHEN: 2009
  • WHERE: Paso Robles, CA
  • HOW: This is rosé three ways. Victor used the Saignée method by limiting the amount of time the juice stayed in contact with the skins. He also performed carbonic maceration by destemming the grapes and letting them ferment whole in an oxygen-free, carbon dioxide environment. Finally, he used the juice from under-ripe grapes that were picked early and used solely for this rosé.

WHY:In 2009, we toasted rosé to a real summer. Languishing on our coast, swimming in the ocean and playing bocce ball on our beaches; we sipped Provençal rosé from Nalgene bottles. Cut to the 2010 summer in Los Angeles: darkness, foreboding, rain. This was not the 73 degrees and sun summer that we pay 9.75% sales tax for. Cue Victor and his tax-free ray of light industry sample.

The Vines on the Marycrest Summertime seems to glow in the glass. In a test tube, it would make a great substitute for glow sticks. The fluorescent watermelon color of the wine is deceitful, as it leads most to believe the juice will be sweet. We apologize, White Zinfandel fans, you’re about to be disappointed. The nose is dusty, most likely attributed to the Mourvedré, contributing a funk similar to a rosé from Bandol. This dust is finished with mineral and floral spring water accents.

The front palate has the tiniest hint of candied apple fading elegantly into lingering acidity. The residual sugar is immediate then fades into a rosé, contributing body. The grenache and mourvèdre make way for the syrah and zinfandel. (Both are perfect accompaniments for the two more predominant grapes in the blend.) Vegetal, tomato vine and nettle in the mid-palate give way to creek bed, shale and more dust – reminiscent of another great rosé producing region, Tavel. The acidity of this dry rose hangs on for a lengthy finish, much like an Indian Summer.

The Wrap: Vines on the Marycrest’s Summertime is able to make summer feel perpetual with a body that can carry it through any season. That being said we will be looking towards Summertime for our pairings well into fall for lighter Thanksgiving fare. The 2010 vintage will prove to be another success: drinkable, affordable & easily paired. While Joni Mitchell and Herbie Hancock portray a city view of summertime in the song that provided its namesake, 2011 finds at least a couple of us chasing lightning bugs during a country summer. In either setting, Summertime still shines.

Wine Website: http://www.vinesonthemarycrest.com

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