2011 Eric|Kent, a rose blend, Sonoma Coast
14.1% alcohol, $20|240 cases| 65PN|20GR|15SR
With the recent arrival of Spring, it is easy to imagine some delicious Rose wines just around the corner. One of the things I find about domestic examples is a lot of them are pretty good, but it is rare for one that gets compared with the likes of Tavel (See, I’m already thinking about the lunch at Hospice du Rhone next month! Earlier this week, I opened the box of samples from Eric Kent Winery, a producer who makes very solid wines, fairly priced and offer some of the most interesting artwork on the labels of any producer this side of Sine qua Non.
The box contained a rose, as well as a pair of Chardonnay. My typical regimen is to taste all wines initially at room temperature where the whites will more easily show their flaws, if present. When I first opened the rose, I noticed it had a brilliant ruby color. Some dispute the notion that color means anything to a review however I appreciated the visual element very much. Comprised of 65% Pinot Noir, 20% Grenache, and 15% Syrah it shows solid aromas of red raspberry, strawberry and mineral. On the palate, cherry and strawberry present in a lush, round and ripe fashion. The structure of this wine is very attractive and serious, delivering pristine dryness while maintaining a vibrant aromatic and flavor experience. Dare I call it a Sonoma Coastavel? Chilling it masks to much of the special qualities this wine has. Twenty minutes in the refrigerator should be plenty. Stock up for Spring and summer.