You know the rose craze has swept the Earth when our selection comes from Portugal (like who would have thought!). This example is produced off the coast near Lisbon by the Riboli Family (proprietors of San Antonio Winery) and the Pegoes Winery (Portugal's Winery of the Year in 2017).
This is the first time in recent memory that a co-op winery was named Winery of the Year. For years after WWII, co-ops were formed all over the world to pool resources and defray costs. They usually made inexpensive wines for everyday drinking. But today, the rulebook has changed. Those resources now allow them to build and operate the most technologically advanced wineries and compete with the most prestigious estates in the world.
This co-op was founded in 1958 by a handful of small growers. Today it boasts 148 growers that cover 2,500 acres of vineyards. They have the resources to make great wines in any vintage with literally any grape. This one knocked our socks off.
Typically, you expect a rose to be light and airy. This one has much more flavor and extract with a grip that says "not so fast." That is probably due to the fact that the grapes here are equal amounts of Syrah and Aragonez, aka Tempranillo in Spain. Both sport imposing flavors, even in a rose.
The wild strawberry and cherry flavors sit on the palate like a red wine, but it lingers with soft flecks of dried cranberry and citrus just waiting for chicken almandine or sand dabs in garlic butter.