As you know we are serious about wine at The Ojai Vineyard, and the approach we take making rosé is no exception. Finding fault in the heaviness of some of our earlier efforts got me to reexamine our whole approach to this wine. I realized that bleeding off juice from the red ferments was not the way to make rosé. Not only did it make the reds clunky, it made a rosé that was clumsy. So these days we start in the vineyard, choose sites that will work well, and pick them at modest sugar levels specifically for rosé. When the fruit comes into the winery we treat it exactly like a white wine. It is not allowed any maceration on the skins, for that would bring unwanted weightiness. Instead, we immediately whole cluster press the grapes, and after an overnight settling the juice is fermented in older French oak barrels. The new wine remains there on its lees until early spring and then is bottled.
This 2011 is made from Mourvedre (50%) from Vogelzang Vineyard in Santa Ynez, Grenache (25%) from Rich Vineyard in Ojai and Syrah (25%) from Roll Ranch in Ojai. Aromatically the wine is already showing pretty red fruit scents and possesses an underlying wildness that is so characteristic of Mourvedre. The flavors are relatively plush, but kept in balance by a refreshing crispness.
Blend: 25% Syrah, 25% Grenache, 50% Mourvedre | Vineyard: Roll Ranch, Rich, Vogelzang | AVA: California Alcohol: 13% | Vinification: Neutral French Oak | Barrel Aging: 5 Months | Total Production: 540 Cases