I’m always shocked by the color of this wine. I dunno… I guess the word ‘Mission’ and heritage varieties instills a pre-disposed anticipation of dark, heady stuff. but then you remember how Mission was classically made–kinda a thin, sweet wine, and it all makes sense. Light, transparent garnet–I’ve seen Paso rosés darker than this. Cherubic ripe fruit, glossy and round, a deep cherry defying the density in the glass. Tiny bits of vegetal: green leafy stuff–broccoli stems and kale–add to the soft, slightly-chubby nose. Slight barnyard, an old-worldy twist fulfilling the spicy core of minerality.
In the mouth, an almost light-pinot sensation. Leathery with match-head and generous fruit, it sits well outside any blind guesses. Watery to a point, refreshing and delicious–in a light way–the acid and citrus mineral base-line doesn’t let you get too comfortable with thinking it a “light red”. It drinks well down around 60-65°… I am not suggesting a *chilled red* but it feels a tad flabby above that. Spicy and charismatic, the sharp berry mingles with slight oak polish and has a distinct rasp to it drying out the middle and finish with aplomb. It still shocks me how concentrated the body is for the ridiculously light color and soft nose. It’s just a flat-out juicy, delicious wine. Get to know Mission. Forget any ideas of this being a weird token to hipster-fascination with strange varieties only dorks will love: it’s actually a solid, elegant wine fitting into a slot you never knew you needed and everyone will love. You’ve never had anything like it.
2019 SABELLI-FRISCH ‘Hernan’ Mission Somers Vyd Mokelumne River San Joaquin Co 12.9