Just like Pinot, Grenache comes in three colors: white, grey and black. We're confident that the red wine, being sold in this newsletter as Grenache, is produced from the Grenache Noir grape variety but suspect that some, or perhaps all, the Grenache grapes in this rosé bottling, are of the Gris variant. The fruit comes from Debbie Pallini's ancient head-trained vines, planted by her father and grandfather in 1952. Our first efforts in making a deeply colored red wine from this variety were disappointing, so in 2002 we decided to try producing a rosé. We were delighted with the results and with the aromatics in Debbie's grapes. This perfume is a characteristic of the Gris variety but it is enhanced by the fact that Pallini's site is especially cool. Whatever the exact type of Grenache, we are tickled pink with the rosé wines produced from this vineyard. In 2013, to augment Pallini's grapes, we sourced a small amount of Grenache Noir from Al Tollini, a much appreciated grower of grapes for Navarro's Zinfandel.
After the cork is inserted, the bottles are left upright for a little while, then Josephina Eligio packs them neck down. We prefer to label later; that way we can examine each bottle to make sure there are no "leakers" or other problems.
Jim Klein and Ed Pallini (Debbie's father). We've been purchasing grapes from the Pallini family every year since 1991 and you can count on Ed's footprints in the vineyard during the growing season
To add complexity to the cuvée, we also purchased old-vine Carignan from Al's grandfather. So although our model for rosé comes from the south of France, the grapes for this bottling were grown by the descendants of Mendocino's industrious Italian immigrants. Dry with suggestions of rose petal, vanilla and strawberry and a delicate pink cast, this wine is a pretty addition to bouillabaisse, crab cakes or risotto primavera.
Filling bottles with rosé