Seeing Pink – Paso and Provence

 

Pink - Halter Ranch Vineyard

The Last Tasting

 

Last Friday the Halter Ranch Winery team sat down to taste a series of pink wines (also known as Rosé) from Provence against our own 2013 HRV Rosé.  The goal was to see how our Rosé stood up to the old world cousins who are credited with stylistic influence in its creation and color.  What we found may shock you.  

 

Pink

Mystery Bags

 

Well maybe not shock you, but it’s at least exciting.  While tasting through the wines it was readily apparent that the majority were showing reduced characteristics.  ‘Reduction’ when used in the context of wine refers to aromas and flavors that might fall under the general heading: funk. Both rosé and white wine have a tendency to accrue reduced characteristics during fermentation when they are kept in an anaerobic environment.  Under this condition, various byproducts of the fermentation become bound up in the wine itself.  Generally, wines from across the Atlantic lean toward more reductive flavors and aromas.  This was affirmed for the most part in the tasting.  Reductive characteristics are not necessarily considered flaws and often blow off over time as the wine is exposed to oxygen.  Even after the wines were allowed ample time to open up, two stood out.  The first is imported by Kermit Lynch, made predominantly from Grenache, and originating in the Languedoc just west of Provence in the south of France.  The second was our own Halter Ranch rosé.

 

Pink - Halter Ranch Vineyard

The Line-up Unveiled

 

It is noteworthy that our entire staff keyed in blind on the wine we produce as one of the favorites of the bunch.  It is possible to argue we may be the victims of house palate or other self affirming syndromes.  It is also worth considering the fact that within this tasting, the HRV rosé was what a statistician would refer to as an outlier.  It’s weight and flavor profile lay toward the riper end of the continuum while the French offerings all lay more toward the lighter end.  This is a fairly common generalization between wines from France where sunlight and warmth are more scarce on average, and California where they tend to be more consistent (particularly in Paso Robles).  Regardless, our 2013 tasted excellent and developed well in the glass.  It was very refreshing to find that our concerted efforts in the vineyard and winery to produce excellent rosé have resulted in what I’m beginning to describe as one of the most delicious wines we’ve yet produced.  Without hyperbole (well maybe with a little hyperbole) it is flying off the shelves.

As always, thank you for reading and we’ll see you next week.  Cheers until then!

Below are links to three recent articles featuring Halter Ranch and Paso Robles:

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/paso-robles-is-californias-new-698693

http://www.cntraveler.com/features/2014/05/central-california-coast-road-trip-usa

http://www.abc15.com/lifestyle/sonoran-living/let-the-party-come-to-you-with-wine-paring-101



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