Sierra Dreams is a wine made without hesitation on the fly throughout the harvest crushing and soaking both white and red grapes together to first release all that’s water soluble – the colors and fruit flavors.
Sometimes this soaking may only be for hours and other times for a day or more before we press the must to separate the juice and the skins. Once the alcoholic fermentation begins, the ever increasing percentage of alcohol extracts a new set of flavors and components many of which are too harsh for a delicate blush/rose wine like our beautiful Sierra Dreams. So to target all that is fresh, juicy and good we take the pressed juice and cold ferment it in SS tanks over a long period of time.
Fermentation let alone would happen in 3-5 days start to finish. In so doing the temperature could rise to 95+ degrees, volatilizing the lovely esters and aromas in the atmosphere forever lost. But through temperature-controlled fermentation, the new wine bubbles slowly along over the course of 3-4 weeks retaining those aromatics and developing the freshest of flavors.
The formula or blend of grapes used and how much soaking before pressing is allowed is never the same from year to year. I am truly the ‘Iron Winemaker’ at his finest and I love it that way. I’m tasting other red wine fermentations that are happening in the winery at the same time and may be inspired to steal a little juice to add to the complexity of the new developing Sierra Dreams. The goal is always clear and the same – to create a fun rose’ wine that is perfectly off-dry, meaning just sweet enough to satisfy the sweeter wine drinker without being soda-pop like. ‘A real socializer’ were two can meet from opposite ends of the pendulmn in a magic place of sharing, sipping, socializing and no complaining for that moment.
That’s my story and I’ve been sticking to it for over 25 years. First came our Zinfandel Blanc in 1980 and then we gave in to calling it White Zin but saw the benefits of crushing multiple varietals, giving up that 75% rule to call it White Zin way back in the late 1980s when we started calling our blend Sierra Dreams. And when most wineries had dropped this White Zin style wine in shame and not wanting to be affiliated with wine drinkers that like pink and a bit of sweetness, we honor all our customers with enough wines to please every one.
2007 Sierra Dreams
This handsome blush wine has an alluring delicate floral/fruity nose that just pulls you in to the wonderful soft tastes of cherries, strawberries, white peaches and citrus. The off-dry sweetness is well balanced with its acidity making a most pleasant finish. With Spring and Summer right around the corner stock up on this poolside/dockside/backyard/patio sipper before its all gone – about 100 cases left and at great prices.
And if you like your roses classically dry, I highly recommend our 2009 Sangre de Montana.