RESCUE rosé HYPE #NEVERsaignee

Whether the 2016 #RESCUErosé is in fact Washington’s best rosé (or not), is completely up to your palate. However, how can it not be while helping support Seattle Humane and other Animal Rescue Shelters in the area? 

This week we received news that our 2016 Rescue Rosé just won "Best in Class" at this years Seattle Wine Awards. The Northwest's most prestigious blind tasting competition, judged by seasoned Master Sommeliers, Masters of Wine, and other industry professionals. 

#NeverSaignee is a hashtag you will see us using on social media often.  What does saignee mean, you ask? Learn more below on what saignee means and why Upsidedown Wine chooses not use this method. 

When a winemaker desires to impart more tannin and color to a red wine, some of the pink juice from the must can be removed at an early stage in what is known as the Saignée (from French bleeding) method. The red wine remaining in the vats is intensified as a result of the bleeding, because the volume of juice in the must is reduced, and the must involved in the maceration becomes more concentrated. The pink juice that is removed can be fermented separately to produce rosé.    (Thanks Wikipedia!)

When the juice is separated and fermented, you have to add a lot of water; and when you add a lot of water, you also have to add citric acid to balance it out. Creating something from what would be thrown down the drain is far better than nothing! However, we feel this diminishes mouth feel, flavor, and doesn’t showcase the true wine. Rosé can often be an after-thought in winemaking, and that’s exactly what I’m trying to avoid at Upsidedown. We grow our Nebbiolo from start to finish with rosé in mind! I believe the best wine is made with very little intervention throughout the process. My goal for this rosé was to retain natural acidity and in doing so we pick the grapes at around 22 brixs; keeping the acid high and alcohol low. This is all managed in the vineyard by cropping the grapes around 4.5 tons an acre. Balance in the vineyard in turn makes the numbers spot-on in the winery,therefore no water or acid need to be added. From there, the grapes are pressed whole cluster (like a white wine is) and then fermented at low temperatures to retain the fruit-forward characteristics and a nose that you can smell from across the room!

Hopefully that gives you a little lesson on the rosé making process, and why it’s different from making other wines.  If you have any questions, don’t hold back!  Talking wine is one of my favorite pastimes!

I hope you get a chance to share a bottle our rosé this summer, cheers! 

Limited 1.5L Photo - Nate Watters

Limited 1.5L Photo - Nate Watters

Seth Kitzke