2019 CABERNET SAUVIGNON:
Paso Robles is one of California’s most pastoral domains. Its name roughly translates to “Passageway of Oaks,” and indeed, majestic trees mark the landscape. Amongst the rolling hills and native habitat lie manicured vineyards, where ideal soil exists for farming Cabernet. Dry, warm conditions are typical, yet evenings are chilled by a breeze from the Pacific Ocean just 18 miles to the west, allowing fruit to ripen into luxurious richness.
2019 was a challenging growing season. Above average rainfall persisted throughout the spring with the last rainfall occurring May 31st. These conditions kept the spring free of frost threats but relatively cool, leading to slow vine growth. The cooler weather also delayed fruit development. The summer months were somewhat erratic with short heat waves followed by cooler periods. These conditions helped the vines and clusters to somewhat catch up. Ultimately, the cooler weather persisted with only a few autumn heat spikes, leading to slower berry maturities and a later harvest. Mid- late October brought overnight freezes which required some harvest mitigation, but by early November harvest was complete.
After harvesting the grapes, select vineyard lots were fermented individually in stainless steel tanks for 10-14 days. Extended macerations and carefully managed pump overs enhanced the extraction of color and tannin. The lots were aged separately for 11 months in a combination of 10% new, 25% once used, and 65% two to three times used French Oak. Through a combination of tasting and analytics our best lots were determined and the initial blend was assembled in late summer of 2020. As a whole, this blend was aged an additional three months in 75% new and 25% once used French Oak. The wine was racked just twice during its cellar life, with the final racking occurring just prior to bottling.
The classic ruby color of this wine is stunning and sets the stage for this robust Cabernet Sauvignon. On the nose, aromas of tobacco, dark chocolate shavings, fresh black currant and hints of savory notes. On the palate, layers of vanilla, coco powder, juicy cherry, baking spices and signature tobacco create a full body wine that is balanced by a splash of fresh acid and round, refined tannins.