Although unusual, it is not the only oaked rosé in the region – Bodegas Navajas makes a Crianza Rosado - and Muga is famed for its lightly colored rosé that is a blend of Garnacha, Viura and Tempranillo, macerated in press for just a few hours, before fermenting for 15-20 days in wooden vats.
Rosados de Navarra
Navarra is the only DO to define a specific method of production for its rosés – sangrado – when the must is “bled off” the skins once it reaches the desired color.
Xabi Sanz, of Viña Zorzal comments on the history of Navarran rosé, “For many years, rosados, claretes and bulk wines constituted the majority of Navarra’s production. In the 1970s, committees looked to define a particular style of wine to differentiate it from Rioja, and the decision was made to focus on rosados made from red grapes – principally Garnacha - using the sangrado method. Our Viña Zorzal Rosado is a representation of this traditional style of Navarra rosé. The only change we’ve made is to macerate for less time than our father for a lighter-colored wine. Although I respect Provençal-style rosés, I think in the age of globalization it is good for Navarra to maintain its traditional style.”
José Luis Ruiz, technical director of Bodega Otazu, which has just launched the 2019 vintage of Otazu Rosado Merlot, agrees: “In recent years, there has been a trend towards paler colored rosés. In our case, we continue to opt for a mid-hued rosé, not only because it is part of Navarra’s identity, but also because we also believe it is the best way to express the character of Merlot in this type of wine. Unlike Tempranillo or Garnacha, Merlot grapes release a lot of color as soon as you crush them.”