2011 Cline Mourvedre Rosé Contra Costa Co 13.5%

This smells meaty and slightly funky, all leathered up and ready to ride. Burning rubber, oil and grease, exhaust fumes and spicy black fruit; I name thee Evil Rider. Bright on entry, this does show a little sweetness to the blueberry, black plum and cherry flavors. Round and fairly lush in style, it maintains a firm base of acidity that draws the wine across a rather long finish. Decidedly plummy in nature and looking good for BBQ duty. 89pts

2011 Abacela Grenache Rosé Umpqua Valley Oregon 13%

This shows nice mineral, herb and cherry skin aromas on the nose, over a base of dry earth and dried grass. This is fairly rich in the mouth with good acidity and plenty of lightly brambly berry fruit. There’s a nice pop of strawberry on the palate with feathery tannins that drive the mineral, lemon pith and quartz-toned finish. Big and juicy, this has lovely, fresh berry fruit that is quite aromatic in the mouth. 89pts

2011 Chateau Routas Coteaux Varois en Provence 13%

Lemon, chalk and wild raspberry aromas greet the nose along with a sweet tarry edge. An unusually textured wine, rather soft and supple but at the same time firm and tight. There’s nice fruit here, a bit too much sugar adding richness for this to be dry, but the flavors of cherry and raspberry flecked with spicy mineral notes are attractive. The finish is bursting with grapefruit pith, peach and raspberry fruit, all dusted with a suggestion of white pepper. This is really quite lovely. 88pts

2011 Acrobat Rosé of Pinot Gris Oregon 13%

This smells of tangerines, apricots and honeysuckle, very Gewürztraminer-like in many ways and really attractive. Fresh and summery to be sure, this shows more red fruit in the mouth but retains some of the lovely aromatics as well. Bright and juicy, there is enough sugar here to add softness but not sweetness to the palate, which develops that perfumed apricot quality on the back end. This is a lot of fun. 87pts

2011 Ghost Hill The Spirit of Pinot Noir Rosé Bayliss-Bower Vineyard 13.5%

A bit meaty on the nose with notes of burnished cherry, pomegranate and perfumed apricot fruit, along with a sharp chalky tone. A bit large scaled but nicely dry, this is surprisingly rich with bright acidity and a suggestion of tannin helping to fill the mouth. There’s lovely, leafy-edged red berry fruit here, touched with a hint of blood orange that turns a bit compact on the moderately long finish. The finish is almost a touch bitter with some herb stem and slightly soapy cilantro elements. A bit aggressive. 87pts

2011 Troon Vineyard Jeanie in the Bottle Applegate Valley 11.5%


Crushed raspberries, white pepper and violets greet the nose along with a big watermelon undertone and some pollen fennel notes. A touch sweet in the mouth and rather light-bodied, this shows off some decidedly plummy tones in the mouth with spicy red berry top notes and a lightly jammy, strawberry back end. The finish is a touch short and shows the acid struggling to cleanse the palate. Fun but a bit sweet for me. 86pts

2011 Chateau de la Roulerie Rosé d’Anjou Valle de la Loire 11.5%

This is smoky and spicy on the nose with a nice tobacco edge to the dark berry fruit.  Noticeably sweet, but at the same time with a supportive spice of acidity. This is plump and juicy with cranberry and strawberry fruit. The herbal element here adds some nice complexity and the fruit turns all sweet and watermelon-like on the moderately long, somewhat sticky finish. This needs spicy Asian-influenced food to show its best. 86pts