Thursday, November 10, 2011

Rose Rockoff - Wines & After Party

In the last post I announced the winners & all the wines of the Rose Rockoff, but I was to much of a wimp to get you the details as I was too tired. But today, I'm bright eyed & bushy tailed and will give you the full low down!

There was a tie for the winner of the Rose Rockoff Event. The winners were: L'Aventure Cote A Cote Rose & Chamisal Grenache Rose. That said, the top six of my favorite roses are ALL winners in my eyes as they made it to the top six out of 35 or so. There is no second place - all of these are great roses. So though I'm naming the two "winners", I want you to know about each rose as they are ALL great wines. So here we go:

The Cote A Cote is 64% Mourvedre, 26% Grenache & 10% Syrah. It had a strongly intense Mourvedre nose - meaning the earthy "barnyard" quality that you can get with mourvedre. Though mourvedre isn't my favorite varietal in a rose, this is probably the best rose I've ever had in my entire life. I mean, the quality! Amazing job, Stephan. What I loved about it is that yes, you tasted the mourvedre, but it was light, and gave a cool mourvedre "kick" at the back of the palate. Robert, the Tasting Room Manager at L'Aventure had told me that this rose was left only five minutes on the skins - wow! Such a beautiful rose - everyone was so sad to find out that it is sold out. But remember it for next year!

L'Aventure 2010 Cote A Cote Rose $30

The Chamisal Rose is 100% Grenache. The first thing I noticed about this rose was its color - a gorgeous cranberry. It is a clean/crisp rose with a tartness & spice that I love at the back of the palate. It had quite a creamy, elegant mouthfeel with a touch of sweetness which, as I always say: "helps to make the medicine go down." :) It was also bright at the front of the palate - feeling like raspberry/cranberry. Chamisal had two different clones of Grenache for the rose - both chosen for their red fruit and spice. The rose is not available in the tasting room, but you may still be able to order online. Email them & ask!

Chamisal 2010 Estate Rose $22

The La Grande Cote rose is a joint venture by Guillaume Fabre (winemaker for Clos Solene as well as the assistant winemaker for L'Aventure) and Erich Russell (Viticulturist.) The blend is 49% Mourvedre, 32% Syrah and 19% Grenache. I love the nose on this rose! So beautiful - tons of tropical fruit. But what I love most about this rose is how dry it is. I mean, it is literally BONE dry. In fact, that's a big part of the reason why I chose to have this rose as part of the tasting as it is really hard to find a bone dry rose from the Paso area. It is very light on the palate so I started the tasting with this rose - and everyone commented on how fabulously dry it is. This is the rose that the "cocky bunch" thought was a L'Aventure, but it wasn't! It was La Grand Cote. And I have to admit, going into the tasting, my favorite was Chamisal...and I knew everyone would love the L'Aventure Cote A Cote...but the night of the tasting, La Grande Cote was my absolute favorite! I think it was because it is on the lighter side and super dry - and since I'm such a bubbles girl now, I loved the crispness of this rose.

La Grande Cote 2010 Rose $25 (Just e-mail them to ask about it!)

The Terry Hoage Bam Bam Rose is 50% Syrah, 25% Grenache & 25% Cinsault. The Bam Bam Rose is a HUGE rose! It's on the heavier end for me - even the color almost takes it to a red wine vs. a light colored rose. It's almost a chewy rose that is a bit tart and to me - tastes like fabulous cranberry. Not tons of fruit but has great minerality. It's funny - because of the color, I almost would have thought that it was a big earthy/barnyard/funky mourvedre based rose that I wouldn't like - but not so! It's pure, beautiful, clean fruit - an all around great rose!

The 2010 Terry Hoage Bam Bam  ($20) is sold out, so be first in line to try the 2011 version!!

The L'Aventure Estate Rose is one of the first roses I ever tried that I truly loved. The blend is 70% Syrah & 30% Cabernet. I remember trying it at the winery on a cold day, and not really loving it. But we still bought it and took it home with us. A few weeks later, the weather was 90 degrees, and we popped this baby open - OMG! Then I realized why everyone loved this L'Aventure Rose! It's pretty intense and to me has gorgeous, luscious flavors of guava, kiwi & watermelon.  Simply a fabulous rose - a must have. And great news - it is still available!

L'Aventure 2010 Estate Rose $25

Last but not least is the Clayhouse Adobe Pink Rose. The blend is 38% Mourvedre, 32% Syrah & 30% Cabernet. It is quite a light rose, so we poured it as # 2 in the line up. It has a bit of sweetness to it yet most folks would consider it dry. To me it has flavors of kiwi & watermelon along with a strawberry aftertaste. It was almost tangy & zippy! A FABULOUS rose for the pricepoint of $15.

Clayhouse 2010 Adobe PInk Rose $15

So yay! That's the lineup as well as all the details about the roses from my fabulous Rose Rockoff Tasting Event. (I'm not getting cocky, am I??) But I wouldn't have been able to hold the event without the help of all the wonderful folks at 15C in Templeton. Here's a photo of the crew with a couple of extras added in:

From left to right: Ali (the owner of 15C), Lisa Ortman (owner of Ortman wines), Carly (works @15C), Alex (from Tablas Creek who crashed the photo), Holly (who works at 15C) and Loshel (who works @ 15C - notice how he is texting while I'm taking the photo....) and in the front is my buddy T who works at 15C as well as Cypher Winery.

Thanks guys! You all helped make the event a great success!

One of my favorite things that happened that night is that in some way, somehow, 15C became a disco night club as they were getting ready to close. I mean really, truly - T plugged his ipod into the stereo system and woo hoo - we were jammin. That's when Michelle and I heard "Just Dance" by Lady Gaga and off we went. We both LOVE Lady Gaga and have to sing along with her whenever we can. The way it began was Michelle sauntering up to me singing "I've had a little but to much - oh oh oh oh" and I was well on my way. What I love about Michelle and I is that we shared the song - I'd sing "What's going on on the floor" and she's sing "I love this record baby but I can't see straight anymore" and that was us! Thank God I was beyond tipsy otherwise I never would have been up for it - too funny. BTW - if you know us, we also did a legendary gig singing Bad Romance. It's on video somewhere...I'm still trying to figure out how to destroy the tape....

I'm ending with this fabulous photo of Maggie (from Alta Colina) and I having a ball at the dance party:

I think Maggie's face sums it all up right there :)

Woo hoo! That's it for the Rose Rockoff Blog! A big thanks to 15C for hosting the event, and a big thanks to all who attended the event. Up next: a bubbles tasting event for the holidays and a Grenache tasting for my birthday in Febraury. I'm super excited! I think I'll make a habit of this as it is too much fun :)

Thanks to all of you who were a part of this first tasting event. Rock on! :)

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