On a warm summer day, many people’s thoughts turn to Rosé. One of the best places for thoughts to run anywhere is Keyways Vineyard and Winery. Set in on a gentle hill on the De Portola Wine Trail, Keyways has beautiful views and a lovely setting. I was there this week to visit my longtime friend, Jacque, who pours there. We have both been in and around wine country for years, and I knew she would help me find what I wanted. When I went in, I wasn’t necessarily thinking Rosé, I just wanted a bottle of wine to enjoy with my husband on our back porch. We were coming off a long week, and nothing lubricates life’s rough spots quite like a good bottle of wine.
“We have some great estate wines,” Jacque said, referring to the wines that are made only with grapes grown on the winery property. “Try the Tempranache”
My interest was piqued, as I didn’t know of another winery blending Tempranillo and Grenache grapes. Winemakers tend to blend grapes from similar regions, but a Tempranillo grape is from Spain, while Grenache is usually thought of as a French grape.
Expecting a Red, I was surprised to see Jacque pour a Rosé. She saw my hesitancy.
“Go ahead, it’s not sweet.”
She was right, it was a perfect summer Rosé, light, beautiful color, and with the slightest pleasant bitterness, as though someone had just twisted an orange peel over it. The nose had watermelon and strawberries, with strawberry still evident on the palate. It is a wine to drink chilled, but not too chilled. The Tempranche is a blend of 63% Grenache and 33% Temranillo. There is less than 1% residual sugar.
Since it was so easy to pick my “patio wine” I had plenty of time to catch up with Jacque on gossip, family news, and more.
I also had time to browse around the always-welcoming Keyways tasting room. They were one of the first wineries to have tables and barstools, encouraging people to stay. The gift area had several beautiful paintings by Napa Artist Jessel Miller, which are also featured on some of the wine labels.
I tend to drink more Rosé in the summertime, but I also tend to complain more about it. I don’t prefer sweet wines, and it is difficult sometimes in a store to pick a Rosé blind. One of the many advantages of Wine Country is that you can “Try before buy” so you don’t have to be stuck with a syrupy sweet wine, unless that is what you want.
Keyways winery is offering 20% off of all sales of Tempranache and 10% off all other wine if you mention Taste of Temecula. If you have not been to Keyways, do yourself a favor and go in. It is a beautiful tasting room with quality wines. And if that is not enough, go and say hi to Jacque.