Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Dusted Valley Ramblin' Rose' - New World vs Old World

A basalt rock from Stoney Vine Vineyard
Stoney Vine, Dusted Valley's newest estate vineyard, was planted in 2007 with primarily Rhone and Mediterranean varietals.  It's located on the Oregon side of the Walla Walla Valley in the world famous "rocks" just outside of Milton Freewater.  It's with much excitement that they present their inaugural release from this vineyard - 2010 Ramblin' Rose'.  The folks at Dusted Valley were nice enough to send me bottle to sample along with an actual rock from their Stoney Vine Vineyard.  How cool is that? A new world Rhone blend of 34% Mourvedre, 28% Cinsault, 26% Grenache, and  12% Syrah.  Their notes on this wine call it "Rose' as it was intended to be".

I thought it would be interesting to taste an old world French Rose' composed of the same grapes and compare the two.  I chose the 2010 Domaine le Clos des Lumieres.  It's blend breakdown is 45% Cinsault, 30% Grenache, 15% Mourvedre, and 10% Syrah.

Color - Right off the bat the evident difference between these two wines is the color.  The DV Rose' is dark pink, almost hot pink vs the Lumieres which is pale salmon in color.
Nose - On the nose the DV Ramblin' Rose' was very expressive with bright cranberry and cherry as well as some cinnamon and smoky notes.  The Lumieres has a much more subtle nose of almond, coconut and apricot with some floral hints.
Taste - The DV Ramblin' Rose' explodes in your mouth with cherry and plum, with an incredibly lingering earthy finish with just a hint of minerality.  Light to medium bodied wine. Once again, the Lumieres sip is more subdued and light bodied, honey, smooth, flat mid-palate, nice finish.

I paired these wines with a few different foods to see how they would do.  The DV Rose' sang loudly with grilled prawns with strawberry salsa. Of course the strawberries paired well, but the surprise was how will it meshed with the mint in the salsa as well.  I struggled with the Lumieres to find a good food pairing.  It's such a light wine that almost everything I tried to pair it with overpowered it.  I did find some success pairing it with spicier foods.

Even though these two Roses are comprised of the same grapes (albeit different amounts), they are strikingly different. The Dusted Valley Ramblin Rose' is a fabulous wine, full of flavors and a food pairing dream.  Conversely, the Lumieres is more of a summer afternoon deck sipping wine.

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