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Volubilia, Moroccan Rose

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Probably Morocco is not the first country that springs to mind when we think about wines but winemaking in this North African nation dates back to ancient times and the tradition continued through the Roman era. French colonisation in the 19th and early 20th centuries heralded the return of winemaking. After the country gained independence in 1956, many vineyards were abandoned or ploughed over but in the 1990s, King Hassan II appealed to French investors and wine experts to return the industry to its former glory.

Most vineyards in Morocco are in the foothills of the Atlas Mountains. The relatively high altitudes and the cooling effect of the nearby ocean preserve acidity in grapes and help create balanced wines. Today, the country produces about 40 million bottles of wine annually but only about 5% is exported. About 75 percent of wines are red, predominantly Rhône varieties like Syrah, Grenache and Carignan, as well as Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Rosé and Vin Gris—a style of greyish-pink blush wine—are produced, as are austere whites made from Chenin Blanc, Sauvignon Blanc, Sémillon and more full-bodied Chardonnay.

In this context, Domaine the la Zouina created Volubilia Gris, a blend of Caladoc, Marselan, Mouvedre and Cabernet Sauvignon black grapes crushed and pressed to extract little colour from the skin allowing to produce a delicately coloured rose wine.The domaine is located in the largest wine region of Morocco, 20 km south of Meknes, an estate that stretches over 115 hectares where cypresses and olive trees surround and protect the vines.

Rose wines generally make me think of summer approaching and a picnic on the grass. This quaffable Volubilia Gris a dry, elegant, delicate and balanced wine, offers intense fruit notes. Beautiful salmon colour with reflections of light orange. On the nose, primary aromas of ripened peaches, apricots and nectarines welcoming the summer. On the palate, an enjoyable medium finish with an additional hint of citrus.

This awarded “Mondial du Rose” silver medal wine would pair well with salmon, trout, crab, grilled lobster, prawns, mussels or grilled chicken to be slowly enjoyed in a garden or patio lunch on a sunny day… when the opportunity comes!
Blog posted by Laura

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