THE 2015 GROWING SEASON
After several years of drought, this vintage brought a return to normal rainfall and a much-needed replenishment of the thirsty soil. Spring began right on schedule in March with some warm weather that led to early bud-break and vine growth.April continued warm, leading to consistent and even growth of the canopies. As the season progressed, the weather remained mild, with relatively even temperatures that held throughout the harvest season.The crop ripened about three weeks earlier than normal.
We harvested early in the morning so the fruit would arrive at the winery while the grapes were still cool to preserve their vineyard-fresh flavors.After de-stemming,but not crushing the berries,we cold-soaked the fruit for up to two weeks to soften the skins and allow for ideal extraction. During fermentation, in a combination of closed and open-top stainless steel fermenters, we used both punch-downs and pump-overs to extract color and tannins, and also to control temperatures and maximize flavors.We barreled only the free-run juice, discarding the must, then aged the wine in 100% French oak (60% new, 40% seasoned) for up to nine months.After racking the wine once malolactic fermentation was complete,we racked it one final time before bottling.
A lovely crimson-garnet color. Concentrated black cherry woven with aromas of black plum and blueberry intertwine with notes of spice, forest floor and violet petals. On the palate, the wine is ripe and full with tones of wild berry, maple tobacco, strawberry cola and a bright minerality. Overall, the structure is athletic with a winning balance between opulent fruit and bright acidity.