2017 Purity 'Quench Orangerose’ Rosé
Region: Sierra Foothills + Mendocino County < California
Grapes: Mourvèdre Tempranillo, Chardonnay
Vineyard/Cellar Stats: CCOF certified organic farming; granite and shallow clay/loam soils; Mourvèdre is direct pressed; Tempranillo + Chardonnay direct-pressed and co-fermented for 3 months; then blended and bottled unfined/unfiltered under crown cap with no added SO2; 48 cases (so far – he bottles to order - total will be somewhere around 140); 11% ABV
Winemaker: Noel Diaz
Noel has begun giving his wines affectionate nicknames, and this one is the Orangerose, orange because, well, it’s technically a rosé wine and has a vibrant orange hue. But this slightly pétillant beauty is a mash-up of wines, not your typical rosé blend. There is a long story about how this wine came to be, but basically there was a long heat spike last year around around Labor Day (bad timing for grapes). This shut down the vines and they stopped photosynthesizing, to protect themselves, so, the Mourvèdre ended up with very high acids and relatively low sugar (not a very tasty combo). As Noel explains: “this wine, already zippy from the granite soils, was lean and biting, too austere. One day I was tasting a friend on my rosé of Tempranillo and a small amount of Chardonnay that had been direct pressed and co-fermented for the longest time, maybe 3 months. And it stuck at like maybe 1degree brix. After malo, it got a bit blousy, awkward, not very exciting. Back to tasting with that friend, it occurred to me as we tasted that maybe the two wines could support each other, maybe the sum would be better than the parts, because I always felt that each one had merit but was incomplete. Then I took two samples and combined them proportionally; they sang! The wine was harmonious, and much better as a blend. But then that RS started to get jiggy with the yeasts in the other barrels and the wine began refermenting, that wine is still fermenting. Funny thing though, it tastes super dry with this great acidity. And when I bottle, the ferment stops. That’s the reason for the crown cap, just in case, for insurance - sparkling or not, I love it.” So do we, almost as much as we love the adorable Noel.