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As we whirl quickly from Summer and the Monsoon deep into fall, I find myself staring in horror that I have less time than I thought to drink rosé before the icy cold hands of winter reach their grip across northern Arizona.

The answer to this realization of cold dread, of course, was “go out into the desert and drink some rosé on the top of a really cool hill.”  Naturally, I followed this higher calling, just for you guys.  (Well that, and it was a rough week, so “rosé in the desert” seemed like an all-around good idea to relax and unwind a bit.  Say, now I wonder if “rosé and unwind” should be a hash tag…)

2013 Cracklin’ Rosie Rosé, from Rancho Rossa Vineyards.

The Wine:  The 2013 Cracklin’ Rosie Rosé is named after the Neil Diamond song of the same name, and is a blend of 87% Grenache, and 13% Syrah.  The fruit for this wine came from the Rancho Rossa estate vineyard, so this wine is 100% Sonoita AVA fruit. The grapes for this wine were harvested on 9/21/13 at 20 Brix.  The pH was 3.43, and it was left on the skins one day before being pressed. The winemaker was Chris Hamilton.  It is a pale salmon in color.

The Nose: This wine opens with notes of apple, peach, strawberry, mesquite honey, and the classic Sonoita tangerine. As the wine opens, notes of limestone, grapefruit, and lychee emerge from the glass

The Palate: Notes of white peach and strawberry intermingle with persimmon and apple on the palate.  The wine is ever so slightly effervescent, granting a unique dimension to the palate of this wine.  The finish of this wine lasts for 1 minute and 17 seconds, with notes of tangerine, grapefruit, and persimmon.

The Pairing: Pair this wine with bacon wrapped shrimp or crab.  Barring that, herbed hot wings or a hummus and vegetable plate would work also.  I just like pairing rosé with party foods, I guess.

Impressions:  This was a pretty fun rosé to close out the summer with.  If you don’t get to this wine before winter comes, you could save it in your cellar until next summer… but why?

Grenache rosé is a pretty classic Arizona style; this example is a guerrilla knitter and wildlife biologist who prefers to spend his time in the desert, versus the city.

Rosé in the desert is a good thing.