2022 Sheldon Wines, Rosé, Luc’s Vineyard, Fountaingrove AVA, Sonoma County.
The beautifully Summery 2022 Rosé from Dylan Sheldon at Sheldon Wines is an unoaked, low alcohol and bone dry pink made uniquely from Rioja varietals with 95% Tempranillo and 5% Graciano, a grape Sheldon has fallen in love with along with his signature Grenache, and is a wine that will slow the world down, making you smell the flowers and smile deeply. The palate of this pink/salmon and orange hued Rosé is refreshing with a nice cut of early picked acidity and mineral tones, it pleases the mouth with bright strawberry, ruby grapefruit, sour cherry and watermelon flavors as well as hints of dried herbs, wet flint, spice, subtle floral rose water and orange tea notes. This vintage feels ripe, vinous and smooth, but has plenty of zest and tang to keep things cleansing and vibrant, reminding me of some my favorite old world Rosés from those Rioja Rosados, like from Muga or Ostatu and some of the Provence Rosés that are just that a bit more feral in style. I know, there’s a lot of interesting dry Rosés out there these days, but this one, like Arnot-Robert’s Rosé of Touriga Nacional and Ryme’s Rosé of Aglianico are rare stand outs that are worthy of the chase to find them. Besides this new Rosé, Sheldon has two new reds, a solo varietal Grenache, a blend of Graciano, Syrah, Petite Sirah and Sangiovese, and a very limited sparkling Rosé that are delicious
For his Rosé, Dylan Sheldon chose, in 2022, to focus on Tempranillo and the small dose of Graciano, which was sourced from the small hillside Luc’s Vneyard, which Dylan has has working with for the better part of a decade now, that is in the recently formed AVA of Fountaingrove that is not too far away from Healdsburg and Chalk Hill. The terroir here is distinct with warm exposures and cool nights helped by the Ocean influence that comes up the Russian River and the volcanic, mineral rich soils that all combine to provide rich and complex fruit, with Sheldon taking full advantage of it for a beautifully balanced collection of wines from here. The Luc’s Vineyard is 100% organically farmed and the small yields give depth and concentration in his wines, with Dylan working to achieve textural, transparent and elegant wines, using no new oak and picking his grapes with over Brix to keep the wines lively and food friendly. The Rosé, coming in at 11.5%, was, as mentioned, early harvested as a field blend of the Tempranillo and Graciano grapes and saw a gentle whole cluster cold pressing with just an hour or so of skin contact to achieve this pretty color, after which the wine was fermented and aged exclusively in stainless steel. The Sheldon Rosé was bottled unfined and unfiltered and shows lovely purity of form with just a touch of sultry earthiness that adds to the enjoyment here. Those that have read my prior reviews, will note that these offerings from Sheldon are some of my personal favorites with the lighter touch and dynamic style really hitting the spot.
($27 Est.) 91 Points, grapelive