2011 Napa Valley Rose
California: Napa Valley
What We Say
SUPERIOR WINE ALERT:
We have no problem declaring today’s wine to be the finest Rosé we have tasted, this year. Today’s wine is an extraordinary Rosé that really took our tasting panel by surprise. Elegant, delicious, complex and very flavorful, this Ultra-Premium is one Rosé that you won’t want to miss.
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Mission Codename: Of Love and Meaning
Operative: Agent Red
Objective: Respond to reports of a new, ultra-premium Rosé producer in the Napa Valley. If the wine is as great as reports suggest, procure an ample allotment for our thirsty Operatives.
Mission Status: Accomplished!
Current Winery: DEFINE Wines
Wine Subject: 2011 Rosé
Winemaker: David James
The Wine Spies are always on the hunt for the best wines that we can find. When it comes to Rosé , we are extraordinarily difficult to please. Today’s wine is a new Wine Spies favorite, DEFINE Wines, whose remarkable Rosé offers an exquisite, ultra-premium Summertime drinking experience.
Wine Spies Tasting Profile:
Look – Dark salmon hues, with perfect clarity. Coloration is perfectly even, from core to glinting pink edge. After swirling the wine, tall clusters of skinny, slow moving legs saunter down the glass.
Smell – Lush and complex for a rosé, with darker aromas than the color might suggest. The wine leads with dark cherry, fresh young strawberry, dried French herbs and subtle pink grapefruit. As the wine warms, additional aromas of white peach, subtle slate and dried pink flower petals follow on.
Feel -Right out of the chiller, the wine shows a soft effervescence at the tip of the tongue. As it warms, even slightly, it becomes soft and round on the initial attack. Then, as the wine crosses the mid-palate, it becomes softly grippy. This grippy feeling becomes more pronounced as the wine warms, contributing to a wonderful complexity. A mineral-laden dryness spreads from the tip of the tongue to the rear of the palate, the lips and the cheeks.
Taste – Sweet pink grapefruit and young strawberry mingle with tart cherry, fresh lime, dried rose petals, subtle dried herbs and flint.
Finish Very long and filled with sweet and tar flavors, the fruit take a long time to tail off. As it does, a flinty dryness slowly spreads around the palate. At the very end, an intriguing flash of subtle white spice appears, hanging around for a long time.
Conclusion – This is a truly remarkable Rosé that our tasting panel went absolutely crazy for. Out of the chiller, this wine is fresh and bright and filled with classic, delicious California flavors. As the wine warms, though, it takes on new character and complexity. Each successive sip becomes more flavorful and more elegant than the last. Each sip becomes more fun. Overall, this wine is intriguing, delicious and very interesting. Kudos to David James on his inaugural rose release. We’ll be keeping an eye on this very promising young winemaker. You should, too. Stock up on this wonderful Summertime sipper!
What the Winery Says
About This Wine:
A 6-barrel lot of exotic rosé from whole cluster pressed Napa Valley Syrah and blended with mountain top Red Hills Grenache from Lake County. While it’s rosé of traditional French varietals, the finished products is anything but traditional. These world premium grapes were harvested with intentional complimentary and culinary-pliable characteristics to craft mouthwatering flavors and bold bouquet. This 360-gallon lot was fermented 30% in new French oak barrels to frame and emphasize the quality of our intended flavor profile. The remaining 70% of the final blend was cold fermented in stainless-steel cubes to preserve delegate undertones. The winemaker’s focus was put into building front and mid-body structure, while the French oak provided elegant finishing structure.
About The Winery:
DEFINE wines produces their premium exotic rosé wine at the Micheal Mondavi’s facility down in the southern end of the Napa Valley. The winery currently produces about 50,000 cases, while David James babies his small 6-barrel lot in a designated corner. While DEFINE wines is currently in its premature state, the Mondavi winery allows for plenty of room to blossom. Feel free to give me a call or text at 978-886-7447 if you’d like to meet up for tasting at the facility sometime, the Carneros rolling vineyard hills are gorgeous.
Varietal Blend: Syrah 70% / Grenache 30%
Vineyard: Syrah came from Oakknoll, Napa Valley and Grenache from Red Hills, Lake County.
Acidity: 7.25 g/L
Sugar: .4% (2 grams above dry)
Winemaking Process: Final blend fermentation break down: 70% cold stainless steel, 30% New French Oak
Oak program: warm fermentation with the rich press of Syrah for 5 months within Medium-Light toasted barrels
Bottle: specialty Italian wine bottle with 50% white, 50% silver mica-chip infused paint
Cases produced: 148