As a sliver of the wine world knows, Vista Hills made an orange wine in 2011. The skin-fermented white was created for Seasons 52, a small family of restaurants back east. A notable talking point in contemporary wine culture, orange wine is achieved through extended maceration. The longer the skin contact, the more color, structure and tannins. As opposed to fermenting the pressed juice per a traditional Pinot Gris, the orange wine ferments with the skins on, as a traditional red would. A cap forms in the fermenter, punchdowns commence, etc., until you end up with a rusty coral colored wine with green fruit flavors and a slightly tannic backbone.
The 2011 Treehouse Pinot Gris Rose has developed a bit of a cult following. Although we first debuted this style of wine in 2009, it wasn’t until 2011 that the public was really able to take notice. We sent the 2011 to Seasons 52, where it was promptly placed on the restaurant’s “Drink Them Before They’re Famous” Fall menu. With only 250 cases produced, it was never going to last long. In fact, outside of visiting one of the restaurants, one would be hard-pressed to find it. But that doesn’t make it any less interesting.
Sadly, this wine is not available for retail. Call it guilt for harboring a secret or genuine interest in educating you about a relatively new and hip trend in winemaking. Whatever the reason, at least now you know. The secret is out.
Click on the links below to see what folks are saying about this unusual wine.