2019 End of Nowhere Zinfandel Rosé
Region: Amador County < California
Vineyard/Cellar Stats: Organic, dry-farmed, own-rooted vines at 3000 feet; partial carbonic maceration, aged in neutral French oak; bottled unfined/unfiltered with <10ppm So2; 12.1% ABV
Winemaker: Chris Walsh
Just when we thought we’d seen and done all of the natty wine California had to offer, we stumbled across another scrappy upstart (our favorite kind) -- Chris Walsh, a young dude making some great natural wines high up in the Sierra Foothills. He started his career as an architectural lighting designer in NYC, but when the economy crashed in 2008 and he got the pink slip, he took a job at a local wine bar, was bitten by the wine bug and eventually worked his way up to become a sommelier. In 2014 the young Amador County native came back home and purchased 20 acres across the road from the house in which he grew up, began planting Rhone varieties, and called it Little John Lane Vineyard. The land is farmed organically, with the goal of dry farming once the vines establish. While he’s waiting for his own vines to mature, he’s making his End of Nowhere wines with organic fruit purchased from home-town local connections, like this Zin sourced from dry-farmed, head-trained, own-rooted vines at Trapier Vineyard near Plymouth.
We’re loving this juicy, thirst-quenching Zinfandel rosé (technically a white zin but definitely not of the cheap variety your mom drank in the 80's). An alluring cloudy ballet pink in the glass, its savory and herbal with a watermelon/Campari vibe -- totally refreshing and interesting enough to hold its own with dinner, plus it cleanses the palate after all those bigger winter reds. So basically, a good wine to have around the house this season, for any and all occasions.