2021Âmevive, Rosé of Graciano, Ibarra-Young Vineyard, Los Olivos District, Santa Ynez Valley.
Winemaker Alice Anderson says, that the 2021 growing season was a dream, with weather that was consistent with cool evenings and warm days, without any significant heat spikes there in Santa Barbara County so her grapes, which included these organic Graciano grapes, were able to ripen steadily and evenly throughout the year. And they in her hands produced a brilliant dry Rosé wine made from this little known Rioja varietal with a vivid pink/ruby color, subtle and stony delicate red fruits and a fresh burst of acidity that keeps the palate crisp and focused. This wine comes from a small block of Graciano vines at the Ibarra-Young Vineyard planted in the late 90’s that has been farmed organically, as Alice adds, since its inception, and she hand tends it. This wine, which is the very first I’ve tried from Âmevive, is refreshing, mineral driven and lovely with hints of ruby citrus, strawberry and rosewater. I am looking forward to sampling more wines from this new winery and winemaker, who is focused on holistic and organic grape-growing with a nod towards full regenerative farming practices and certification. After a few sips, more seems to come through and touches of sour cherry, red apple skins and a fine wet chalky notes, all very becoming for a Rosé and encourages more sipping of this clean and naturally stylish wine.
The Âmevive name translates to soulful and or the living soul and in Anderson’s case it means to live soulfully with nature, with her wines being an authentic and transparent extension of that. Alice is hands on in the vineyard and she is in tune with each and every vine and parcel, with this connection being her mission, and this wine is a direct of this relationship. Anderson says that at Ibarra-Young, her Graciano tends to have the most acidity, thus making it destined to become her Rosé. This block was picked on a cold morning and brought into the cellar around 20.5 Brix (low sugars) and were foot stomped to macerate on their skins, then seeing 24 hours of skin maceration, that gave that gorgeous color. The Graciano was gently pressed and then settled for another night before racking to neutral French oak and to stainless steel barrels for fermentation with native yeasts. Anderson explains that her Rosé of Graciano was aged on its full lees throughout elevage and then was bottled unfined and unfiltered, to preserve nuance and gain a touch of texture. The Graciano block is covered in native purple lupine in the springtime, and transitions to the later blooming native Spanish lotus in the early summer, hence the label design and artwork Alice did for this entertaining and compelling dry pink wine that looks set to be great companion for the Summer months ahead. Âmevive, who are just releasing a full collection of offerings, is a label to follow and I can’t wait to dig into the other bottlings.
($32 Est.) 90 Points, grapelive