Gaudete Sunday. As is the tradition here in Vinoland, the wine of choice for the third Sunday of the Advent season is always something pink. I have to say, I am absolutely tickled pink with my wine selection this year. (Sorry, couldn't resist).
The Richard Grant, NV Cuvée Rosé Brut (North Coast AVA) may not be the best California sparkling wine I have ever had, but it is definitely a very pleasant tipple. And it may not be the bubbliest methodé champenoise wine that I have ever had: this Blanc de Noirs has the level of fizz one would more commonly associate with a Crémant. The nose is delicately floral, the mouth-feel is balanced and the sour-cherry-strawberry-red-apple-skin thing on the palate is quite moreish. Whilst this sparkling wine may be average, the story behind this wine is anything but average.
Grant is the middle name of Dr. Richard Peterson. Dr. Peterson may have had one of the more storied Napa Valley wine industry careers, but now he owns, and farms, a Christmas tree farm just north of the city of Napa. Dr. Peterson is the winemaker of my 2015 Gaudete rosé selection, a wine he produces from 2 acres of his property which is reserved for a Pinot noir (PN) vineyard. The backstory of this particular PN clone is great stuff.
Dating back to Roman Britain, a mere 2,000 years, the Wrotham (pronounced root-um) clone of PN was discovered growing in a churchyard in the village of Wrotham, Kent. Said to be naturally disease-resistant, the leaves of the Wrotham clone apparently have a covering of fine white hairs on the upper surface of the leaf blade - I shall have to try and see this for myself next spring. Dr. Peterson's website has more information on this most unusual of Vitis vinifera clones. Good stuff.
Rejoice with something pink.
Sing it Maddy!