2019 Ryme Wine Cellars, Rosé of Aglianico, Heringer Vineyard, Clarksburg AVA, California.
One of my favorite wineries in recent years is Ryme Wine Cellars, with winemakers Megan and Ryan Glaab, who are crafting an awesome collection of fun offerings with an accent on Vermentino, Cabernet Franc and Aglianico, like in this savvy Rosé, as well as a quaffable Sangiovese and Friulano blend, plus a couple of speciality sparklers that are deliciously unique. Ryme is a collaboration of this husband and wife team that are blessed with old world sensibilities, using traditional and mostly natural methods as well as having an admiration for California’s terroir, history and, as they put it, its sunny disposition. Their portfolio of wines has grown gradually and organically since their founding back in 2007, which actually began with a single ton of Aglianico grapes. This bone dry 2019 Rosé of Aglianico is bright, vividly fresh and steely toned with loads of acidity and zesty crisp fruit, this is precise and wonderfully judged wine that is perfectly matched for these warm summer days with sour tart cherry, strawberry, grapefruit/citrus, briery spiced raspberry water, bitter herbs and a hint of rosewater. At first this seems lithe and vibrantly light, but it has some grip and intensity and gains presence with air making it easy to sip, but also brilliant with food, especially seafoods, picnic fare and or a cheese plate. Let Summer begin, and I highly recommend getting these Ryme Aglianico(s) from this Rosé to their deep and tannic red versions, along with their Pet-Nat style crackling Aglianico bubbly!

Ryme has searched out many different vineyard sites for their set of Aglianico red wines, mostly from warm areas to get this powerful grape ripe, but they needed a cooler site to do this exceptional Rosé and after a bit of searching they found the spot. The Heringer Vineyard, which is located in the Clarksburg AVA, known for old California Chenin Blanc and that has a climate well suited to provide natural acidity. With its stony, rich alluvial soil, modestly warm days, as Ryme puts it, and the cool breezes winding through the nearby Delta, the Heringer Vineyard site has the perfect conditions to do this lovely dry pink wine. The Glaab’s note that the Aglianico struggles here to accumulate much sugar and rather than dark and brooding, as it usually is, especially in Campania, Italy where the grape is mostly at home, the fruit retains more delicacy and brightness. At just 20 brix and very high acidity, Ryme brought these grapes into the winery where they were immediately cool whole cluster pressed to minimize its color extraction and it was fermented all naturally without additions in stainless steel and aged a short time neutral wood. As noted in my reviews, I have been highly impressed with Ryme’s efforts with this grape, known as the Barolo of the south in its home country, because of its Nebbiolo like character and this delicately pale Aglianico Rosé is now firmly in my must have wines and I am putting my order in for the latest release right now!
($25 Est.) 92 Points, grapelive

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