Thursday, May 17, 2007

"You call this work?"...pt.2

As if all the work I put in for the previous post wasn't enough, yesterday three friends from my favorite drinks rag, Imbibe Magazine, stopped by the wine shack to taste a batch of Oregon Pinot Noir Rosés for an article coming out in their June issue and to get some input from yours truly. Always happy to help enable the public's consumption and education, and being a lover of all things pink and grapey, I was more than ready. We popped the corks on eight bottles from various local producers, and dove in. Unfortunately, we should've jumped right out, because with one or two exceptions, these were major disappointments.....
My idea of a perfect rosé is one that is dry, crisp, fresh on the nose, light to medium bodied with a snappy finish. You know, pretty much what you get from 90% of Euro rosés, which are my standard bearers. In my experience feeding these to my customers, this is what the public seems to prefer as well. After tasting these local atrocities yesterday, I've gotta wonder what these Oregon wine dudes are thinking. It wasn't just me, either. The Imbibe people pretty much agreed. Especially when I pulled out two '06 French versions so they could see how it should be done. The French bottles blew the Oregon juice away, leaving them seeming simple, one dimensional, and flabby. A couple of the Oregon bottles were near undrinkable. The '06 Maysara was sweet, cloying, lacking acid and any presence. The 2006 Sokol Blosser was undrinkable, having this awful wet wood, smelly sock aroma and flavor that as the wine warmed up only got worse. Kate from Imbibe told me they're pimping it hard at New Seasons, a local grocery chain. All I can say is they must have been cut a helluva deal. Two words: Buyer Beware! Three more: Save your money! This was awful. The one that I will actually consider carrying is the '06 Elk Cove, which actually had that dry, crisp, refreshing character I look for. The '06 Ponzi Rosado is also marginally acceptable. The others were forgettable, and frankly a waste of glass. Plus their prices were almost uniformly $3-$6 more per bottle than what a delicious Euro rosé would cost...yikes!
Oh, the big winner? The little Frenchie rosé from Provence, the 2006 Domaine Sorin "Terra Amata" (above), a steal at $10.95. Perfect right out of the bottle, and even as it sat in the glass didn't lose a bit of its bright, charming flavors. Memo to Oregon rosé producers: Before you start working on your '07 pinks, PLEASE open a few bottles of French, Spanish, or Italian rosés. If not for yourselves, then for your victims...err, customers, who you hope will buy this stuff!

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

Yes! I also tried the S. Blosser, and didn't finish the glass.
The euro's have it down for sure. We did have the Domiane Sorin on Tues, plus another Frenchie Rose suggested by the wine gal at Wild Oats, a Cote du Rhone 'Domaine de la Janasse' 2004($12).
My hubby and I had both with the first light up of the Grill this season! Wonderful!
N & E Carson

Anonymous said...

I just LOVE an HONEST opinion!

bb said...

Thanks....when it comes to rosé, I take my responsibility very seriously!! Besides, when there's so much good juice, why drink the mediocre (or bad) stuff?

kab said...

Good for you for calling them out and naming names...it needs to happen more often! Have you had a chance to taste the J. Christopher, Acme or Cameron entries in this year's rosé sweepstakes?

bb said...

Anonymous...I'm not surprised about your Sokol exepirence. Hey, and what's better than rosés for grill season!

KAB...might as well let people know what's happening. that beating around the bush is so unsatisfying! I've had the J. Christopher...excellent! The ACME & Cameron is coming soon.....I hope!

Anonymous said...

What about the other 4 wines you tasted? When you are looking for the best from Oregon, are you really telling me that these wineries are your sample? How dissapointing. I would think you would give Oregon a better representation before the bashing everyone.

bb said...

To the second anonymous comment-
i didn't supply the wines, the people from Imbibe did, so I didn't make the picks. Hence, i could only comment on the wines we tasted. The other four wines were mediocre, and hardly worthy of comment.
There are some Oregon rosés I like: J. Christopher "Cristo Irresisto", J.K. Carriere "Ice", and Cameron's "Vino Pinko" are all worth the effort (and $$) to find!

dj said...

bb, good to see you putting it all out there. glad you were doing that tasting and not me. btw - jk carriere's version is called 'glass' but maybe over 'ice' it wouldn't be too bad either! definitely check out the Patton Valley 2006 - really great, unlike last year.

bb said...

I know...Glass...not quite sure where that "Ice" came from. Thanks for the correction! And if I can get through all these great Euros, I'll check out the Patton Valley. I have heard good things about it.

Anonymous said...

I'd live to try the Domaine Sorin. Where can I find it?

bb said...

Unfortunately after the blogpost came out, I sold out of everything I had. I'll effrort for more, and if it comes back, I'll leave a comment.