We started the day bright and early in Crochet‘s teeth-chatteringly frigid cellar, but the dense, electric 2016 Sancerre Rosé quickly snapped us to attention. Long a standout in our stable of classic rosés, this 2016 is shaping up to be among the finest vintages we’ve yet encountered. Gilles produces this wine from younger Pinot Noir vines in the “La Croix du Roy” vineyard, reserving those vines over 25 years of age for his exemplary Sancerre Rouge. Made via direct pressing with no maceration, it offers a similarly chiseled limestone character as Crochet’s white wines, but with fruit pitched toward the vibrant-red zone of the spectrum. While 2016 was a challenging growing season in many parts of northern France, Crochet was fortunate to have harvested decent quantities of very healthy grapes. Compared to the rich, broad-shouldered 2015, this 2016 is similarly dense and concentrated, but with more vibrant acidity and a more energetic personality. It’s delicious even now (Gilles will bottle it in April), and it’s sure to develop beautifully with age–as it has done many vintages before.