2013 Donkey & Goat "Isabel's Cuvée" Mendocino Grenache Gris Rosé

SKU #1156068 92 points Wine Enthusiast

 Akin to a fresh basket of strawberries picked up at the farmer’s market, this Grenache Rosé is intensely floral and fruity. A touch of blood orange peeks through, along with a flirty herbal streak and dry, soft textures. Light and bright, it offers a slight effervescence.  (7/ 2014)

90 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Pale, hazy orange. Intense red berry and blood orange scents are complicated by subtle floral and mineral qualities. Sappy and precise, offering bitter cherry and raspberry flavors and a touch of white pepper. Finishes on a spicy note, with very good clarity and lingering cherry pit and berry skin notes. In a grown-up, dry style, with the richness to work with full-flavored foods.  (6/ 2014)

K&L Notes

When it comes to natural winemaking and a commitment to purity, Donkey & Goat has it dialed in. To start, all the fruit for their wines is foot-stomped (they don't use machines or plastic), and the wines are fermented naturally using native yeasts with no enzymes or other nutrients added to enhance fermentation. Only 364 cases were produced of the 2013 "Isabel's Cuvée" Rosé, made from a field blend of 90+ year old Grenache Gris from a special old Mendocino vineyard in McDowell Valley. Fermented in neutral oak and bottled unfiltered, this crisp, food-friendly rosé has more in common with an old-school Corbieres rose of the Languedoc-Roussillon in France than what you typically find in California. It's consistently a superb, all-occasion rosé from a local producer we adore. Winemaker's notes: "Strawberry, tangerine and melon excite the senses for what follows. A moment to ponder reveals floral and earthy aromas. On the palate juicy berry flavors please while the tannins and acidity prove this is a real wine that compliments nearly everything on the spring and summer table."

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Price: $21.99

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Varietal:

Grenache

- Fat, ripe and rich with ample fruit and vibrant acidity, wines made from Grenache are easy to love. While its origins are still under dispute - some suggest Spain, where it is called Garnacha, while others say it came first from Sardinia, where it is called Cannonau - it is inarguably one of the most planted varietals in the world. A hearty grape, Grenache does well in hot, dry regions and its sturdy stalk also makes it well-suited to withstand blustery conditions like the Provençal Mistral. It ripens at relatively high sugar levels, which translates to higher potential alcohol in the wines it produces. Grenache may be most famous in the Southern Rhône areas such as Châteauneuf-du-Pape and Gigondas where it has long been an important component of delicious blends. But it's also the source of the crisp rosés from Tavel, Lirac and Provence, and age-worthy vins doux naturels like Rivsaltes and Banyuls. Grenache is also found in large swaths of northeastern Spain, in Navarre, in Rioja, where it plays a supporting role in blends with Tempranillo, and in the distinctive wines of Priorat. The grape was once the most widely planted varietal in Australia, though Shiraz and Cabernet have overtaken it. In California, Grenache plantings have dwindled from their heyday in the San Joaquin Valley, but it is starting to see a resurgence, albeit in smaller plantings, where other Rhône varietals thrive.
Country:

United States

- When people consider domestic wine, they normally think about the state of California. The fine viticultural Region within California, including the Napa Valley, Sonoma, Santa Cruz Mountains, Mendocino and Santa Barbara, are capable of growing grapes of world-class quality. But there's plenty of fabulous wine coming from other states, too. Oregon, Washington and New York are also causing eyebrows (and glassware) to be raised around the world. Click for a list of bestselling items from the United States.
Sub-Region:

California

- With the explosive growth that California's wine industry has seen the past several years, it's easy to view winemaking and grape growing in the Golden State as a recent phenomenon. And while it's true that California's viticultural history is brief compared to several European countries, this state's roots date back well over 200 years. Due to the enormous response to California wine within the United States and worldwide, there are thousands of excellent and diverse wines being produced within the state each year. For our entire selection of California wines, please visit this link.
Specific Appellation:

Anderson Valley/Mendocino

- Cooled by the nearby ocean and the seemingly omnipresent bank of oceanic fog, this picturesque wine region is home to a wealth of cool-climate grapes like riesling and gewürztraminer plus chardonnay and pinor noir, which are responsible for impressive and intense sparkling wines.
Alcohol Content (%): 12.7