Jill & Lauren
blending their wedding wine
Since the fall of 2017, we have been working on a custom-made wine for Jill & Lauren’s wedding. They gave us the challenge of crafting a rosé wine that resembled their favorite wine, Chateau D’Esclans Whispering Angel. A challenge indeed. Not only is this one of the world-class rosés, but we were not sure what grapes were used, at what composition, or how to even get the color close, let alone the amazing flavor profile.
But, with their help, we fermented some white zinfandel juice from California all the way to dryness. We racked and filtered the wine, which they helped to do, and we aged the wine for the past 6 months in their stainless tank. At the same time, we had been making other white wines that we knew would need to get blended into the finished product. The final step was to conduct some blending trials of this soon-to-be wedding wine.
On Saturday, March 10th, Jill & Lauren came up to the winery for a little getaway weekend. Lauren’s parents are owners at RiverWalk Resort and this makes visiting us at the winery an easy getaway. They came into the winery that morning, having tasted their White Zinfandel Rosé in the past and having an expectation of the color, flavors, and aromas. What they didn’t expect was to get a blend that was simply “Angelic.”
They started by pouring samples of the White Zinfandel in graduations of 10ml. Each glass would contain 10ml more than the previous one, until we had 10 different options that could be easily converted to percentages (something we need to make a larger lot). Then, we offered the idea of blending into their Zinfandel a new white wine that we have been working on from New York state called “Vidal” short for “Vidal Blanc” which is from a hybrid grape of the 2017 NY vintage. We had noticed that the dry and foxy flavor of the Vidal had a wonderful creaminess to it that we felt would help the rather direct, astringency of the Zinfandel. We were right.
The ladies blended in a set of 10ml graduations of Vidal until each glass had precisely 100ml each of a new blend. The outcome was amazing. The colors shifted from the bright purple of the Zinfandel to the golden yellow of the Vidal over the course of their trial. We would never have predicted that at 13.5% Zinfandel and 86.5% Vidal, we would get a winner. The final blend was almost exactly the same color as their favorite wine. And, I’m pretty sure I heard them say they actually liked theirs better.
The next step is bottling, which they have agreed to help us do. After all, its their wine, their wedding, and their life. We are thrilled that they have been able to craft their very own wine blend together and will have that memory as part of their wedding for a lifetime.
Lastly, we like it so much that we will be blending even more of this new wine we are calling “Angel” and bottling it with our wine club members at our “Spring Release Party” on April 14th. It will be available in our tasting room sometime thereafter.