Jacob’s Creek Le Petit Rosé 2016
By itself that’s not unusual – sensory science underpins wine production after all – but it’s very rare to have an Australian winery that includes this role.
What’s more, JC also has a full sensory lab, complete with red/white light tasting booths, setup to help with analysing samples. Again, not wildly odd, but a further nod to just how seriously they take sensory analysis.
Couple this context with the winery’s focus on innovation, and it is little wonder that when they produce a new wine, it often hits the mark.
Just like they have with this new Jacob’s Creek Le Petit Rosé 2016.
Released as part of a pair of new pink wines (the other an on-premise focused style that is curiously fuller and darker) that are attempting to tap into the runaway growth of rosé (up 20% over 12 months), this is a pale, ‘I’ve been to the French Riviera and wish I have a superyacht’ style pink based on Pinot Noir, Grenache and Mataro.
To be honest, I didn’t expect this to be much more than just palatable. Making savoury style of rosé without it tasting like alcoholic orange/pink coloured water is harder than it looks, and I just assumed this would be pleasant and likely unexciting.
But this is much better than that. It’s still a drinking wine, the flavours light and the palate shaped by acidity. Yet it’s a properly intense wine. There’s no harsh acidity, nor is there excess sugar to prop up the finish. It’s just crunchy, faintly earthey, barely-kissed-by-a-strawberry rosé with enough softness to have you coming back for a second glass.
Strictly speaking this could never be a high-scoring wine. It doesn’t have the structure or length to dictate that, nor the beauty and grace of the best Provencal styles. But as an affordable, well-made summer drink, it performs well above its station.
Best drinking: 2017-2018. 17/20, 90/100. 12.5%, $16.99. Would I buy it? Sure would.