Rossese: Winemaker Randall Grahm describes Rossese

What is Rossese? Rossese is a red wine grape grown in Liguria in Italy that makes light bodied wines not unlike Grignolino. Winemaker Randall Grahm of Bonny Doon Vineyards talks about this “wonderfully wierd” variety that is a missing link between France and Italy.

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Rossese is a fabulous weird grape it’s grown in liguria which is right on the coast of Mediterranean near Genoa it makes it typically a light color red wine very fragrant very aromatic herbal replete with what is called a garrigue or the vegetation of the area to my great delight I recently learned that Ruché, or Rossese a is genetically identical to another great that I love grown in Provence which is called Tibouren and I love Tibouren and I love Rossese but never figured out but they want to same great but but they are apparently well as I said it’s kind of light bodied it’s a little bit like a Grignolino know maybe a little darker in color slightly astringent but again a wonderful mineral depth to it you can think about Rossese as sort of the missing link between France and Italy French wine grapes and Italian wine grapes are are often very different other so many of them but in general they have a different structure different tannic structure French wines are very soft and lower acid by and large Italian grapes are edgier, harder or higher acidity and roses is kind of that funny missing link that seems to be halfway between Piemonte and the Rhone so it’s got kind of the softness and lushness of the Rhone grapes and kind of a little bit of the edginess of the grapes of piemonte Rossese, well in France where it’s called Tiburon it’s they make it as a rose as a pink wine it’s a beautiful beautiful great to use as a rose a occasionally it’s made as a red. only rare occurrences doesn’t develop enough color and body to be made as a as a red wine but when it’s made as a red wine it’s it’s utterly exquisite it has kind of the body of a Burgundy, of a Pinot Noir so it’s not a deep deeply structured wine but enchanting so game and cheeses? cheese’s wild mushrooms lighter dishes anything you do where you use Pinot Noir I think would work really well

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