We recently had our bottle of 2012 Rambling Rosé that we picked up from Muse Winery, located off the highway in between the Swartz Bay ferry terminal and Victoria on Vancouver Island, BC. Several of the bottles we’ve opened from our wine stash have the general effect of: well, this isn’t as good as I remember from the tasting… which goes to show the power of atmosphere when trying a product.
But Rambling Rosé is different. Our bottle at home tasted just as good as when we visited the winery for a tasting in March. That was my first proper wine tasting, and I came away having learned a thing or two about the local varietals. You really can learn a lot from visiting the tasting rooms at vineyards.
The big lesson at Muse for me had to do with the Ortega grape. If I remember the lady at the counter correctly, this varietal originally came from Spain, and at first it didn’t do so well in the local terroir, but the vintners learned how to coax better flavor out of the grape, which is now a local star. Ortega has a strong peach note, which makes it ideal for sipping in the summer. This varietal isn’t part of the Rambling Rosé that I like so much, but I mention Ortega to give you an idea of the local grapes.
Rambling Rosé is a blend of Pinot Gris and Marechal Foch, and at CAD$15 a bottle, it’s a steal (and happens to be sold out at the moment). It’s a very fruity wine, heavy on berry notes, with a good balance between sweetness and acidity.