Blackbird Vineyards Arriviste Rose 2018
Blend: 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Cabernet Franc, 10% Merlot
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
65% Cabernet Sauvignon; 25% Cabernet Franc; 10% Merlot. Year in and year out claiming a place at the head of the class, the Blackbird Arriviste does just that once again and is a surprisingly layered, seriously good Rose that is as well-balanced as it is deep in red currant fruit. It is full and supple in feel with enlivening, seamlessly joined acidity keeping it in exceptionally fine balance, and, at every turn, it displays uncommon sophistication while constantly showing a marvelous sense of succulence. As delicious as it is on its own, it will make a lovely partner to a wide range of pork and veal dishes, and it promises to be just as good several years down the road as it is now. It may not be cheap as Rosés go, but its purchase price is money very well spent.
Blackbird Vineyards is an artisanal producer of Bordeaux-inspired wines from Napa Valley. Crafted by esteemed winemaker Aaron Pott, each wine in the portfolio is a true example of Blackbird’s ongoing commitment to quality and diversity of terroir by partnering with a selection of Napa Valley’s most prestigious vineyards. These include sites in high altitudes of Spring Mountain and Atlas Peak, the alluvial terrain of Saint Helena and the Oak Knoll district in Napa, and the cool climates of Carneros.
One of the world's most highly regarded regions for wine production as well as tourism, the Napa Valley was responsible for bringing worldwide recognition to California winemaking. In the 1960s, a few key wine families settled the area and hedged their bets on the valley's world-class winemaking potential—and they were right.
The Napa wine industry really took off in the 1980s, when producers scooped up vineyard lands and planted vines throughout the county. A number of wineries emerged, and today Napa is home to hundreds of producers ranging from boutique to corporate. Cabernet Sauvignon is definitely the grape of choice here, with many winemakers also focusing on Bordeaux blends. White wines from Napa Valley are usually Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.
Within the Napa Valley lie many smaller sub-AVAs that claim specific wine characteristics based on situation, slope and soil. Farthest south and coolest from the influence of the San Pablo Bay is Carneros, followed by Coombsville to its northeast and then Yountville, Oakville and Rutherford. Above those are the warm St. Helena and the valley's newest and hottest AVA, Calistoga. These areas follow the valley floor and are known generally for creating rich, dense, complex and smooth red wines with good aging potential. The mountain sub appellations, nestled on the slopes overlooking the valley AVAs, include Stags Leap District, Atlas Peak, Chiles Valley (farther east), Howell Mountain, Mt. Veeder, Spring Mountain District and Diamond Mountain District. Napa Valley wines from the mountain regions are often more structured and firm, benefiting from a lot of time in the bottle to evolve and soften.
Whether it’s playful and fun or savory and serious, most rosé today is not your grandmother’s White Zinfandel, though that category remains strong. Pink wine has recently become quite trendy, and this time around it’s commonly quite dry. Since the pigment in red wines comes from keeping fermenting juice in contact with the grape skins for an extended period, it follows that a pink wine can be made using just a brief period of skin contact—usually just a couple of days. The resulting color depends on grape variety and winemaking style, ranging from pale salmon to deep magenta.