Linden's 2018 Rosé is delicate, refined, restrained, and complex. It is "salmon" light in color. Aromas include: fennel, citrus zest, dried thyme and Devonshire cream. The body is light to medium bodied. The wine is dry with zippy acidity and just a touch of pithy tannin to add to its length.
Rosé is always a great wine for picnics or al fresco dining. Cold meats, creative salads, and tabouleh all work well. The 2018 is a great fish wine.
Hardscrabble (60%): the estate vineyard on the Blue Ridge at 1,300 to 1,400 feet with an eastern to southern slope. Deep, well drained granite soils give cherry character and good structure. Vine ages from 3 to 31 years.
Boisseau (20%): Western facing with loamy soils, it is in the Shenandoah Valley in the town of Front Royal, about 6 miles from Linden.
Avenius Vineyard (20%) is located on the Blue Ridge one half mile north of Linden Vineyards at an elevation of 1,300 feet on a steep east facing slope. Soils are well drained, rocky, greenstone and granite.
2018 was with wettest year ever recorded in this area. Much of that rain fell during the growing season. To say the vintage was challenging would be an understatement. It was the most difficult year I have experienced in growing grapes in Virginia since 1981. Facing reality by strategically “punting” was the best way to approach growing and winemaking decisions.
As a wet August transitioned into a wet September it became apparent that good red wine could not be produced in 2018. The juice lacked concentration and potential alcohol (sugar content). The skin tannins were underripe and vegetal. Conversely, a light styled, lower alcohol rosé would be ideal. The 'green' skin tannins were avoided by pressing the grapes immediately with no skin contact. The result: a light, pretty, but surprisingly complex rosé.
The blend is 55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 23% Petit Verdot, 12% Merlot, and 10% Cabernet Franc. Linden's entire red grape production went into this Rosé. This vintage’s Rosé came from red grapes dedicated for Rosé. The red grapes were crushed and pressed immediately (vin gris). Aged sur lie in older 225 liter oak barrels. 2,876 bottles were bottled in March 2019. The alcohol is 11.9 %.