Clarete de Luna Rosé (Cigales 2014)
What better way to celebrate the arrival of warm weather than a cool glass of rosé?
The new vintage of one of our favorite pink wines is back in stock and might be drinking even better than last year. Clarete de Luna is almost a synthesis between rosé and a light red wine. It takes a chill beautifully, as a rosé should, but also offers more dense red fruit, most notably cherry, along with the notes of strawberry, raspberry, and watermelon.
Clarete is a style of rosé popular in northern Spain but difficult to find elsewhere in the world. It’s produced more like red wine in that the juice is allowed to ferment with the grape skins for a short period of time. And since many of the aroma and flavor components of wine are located in the skin of the grapes, Clarete is naturally deeper in color and bolder than a typical rosé.
DO Cigales is located in the harsh, dry climate of northern Spain, along the River Pisuerga, and a stone’s throw from Ribera del Duero (one of the most important regions for Spanish red wine). Historically, Cigales has been associated with the production of high-quality Clarete. Indeed, Bodegas César Príncipe made the ruby-colored Clarete for the bars of Valladolid for many years before they began producing their renowned and age-worthy prestige red, demonstrating the potential of Cigales to create red wines to rival its more well-known neighbor.
Today, César Príncipe’s son, Ignacio, pays heed to the traditions of Cigales with a small amount of Clarete de Luna. The principal grape variety in the blend is the black-skinned Tempranillo with a significant portion of the local white grapes, Verdejo and Albillo, for an energetic and juicy rosé.