Varietal Content: 91% Cabernet Franc, 6% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Sauvignon; Cooperage: 100% French oak, Chateau-style barrels (60 gallons); Age of Barrels: 50% new, 50% second vintage
This is a complex and compelling wine with aromas of blackberry, dragon fruit, spiced plum, dried herbs and espresso. On the full-bodied entry, firm, fine-grained tannins add to the age-worthy structure, while contributing lovely richness to brooding flavors of black raspberry, graphite and tobacco leaf.
In one of the coolest growing seasons in memory, we benefited greatly in 2011 from our 35 years of experience farming Bordeaux varietals. To counteract uneven vine growth due to unusual spring weather, we did meticulous green thinning. We also gently opened up the canopy to expose the fruit, were judicious in our picking schedule, and sorted meticulously both in the vineyards and winery. The majority of our Merlot came in before the October rains, and due to our quality adjustments the remainder of our fruit fared well until it was harvested. Warm up-valley locations like Oakville, Rutherford, St, Helena and Calistoga were particularly successful, and overall the resulting wines are pure and elegant.