2015 Cabernet Franc, Alexander Valley


2015 CABERNET FRANC
Alexander Valley
$48.00  |  Club Price $38.40
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TASTING NOTES
Our Cabernet Franc captures the essence of the 2015 vintage. This wine accentuates the wonderful dark fruit and spice characteristics that are naturally present in Cabernet Franc grapes. Both the nose and palate display an intense aromatic profile of black currant, cherry and plum that continue on the palate with superb oak integration and depth. Tannins are velvety and complement the fruit expression.
450 cases produced


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WINEMAKING NOTES
Varietal Composition: 100% Cabernet Franc
Technical Data: ALC: 15.3% by vol.; TA: 6.3 G/L; pH: 3.52
Cooperage: 22 Months in 100% French Oak Barrels (30% New)

This fruit was hand harvested at night, and the clusters were hand sorted in the vineyard. The grapes were de-stemmed but not crushed and placed in small stainless steel tanks for whole berry fermentation, a technique winemaker Ana Diogo-Draper uses to preserve the fruits bright berry flavors and accentuate the spicy character of the Cabernet Franc. Prior to fermentation the fruit rested at 40-45 degrees Fahrenheit for three days, gently extracting color, flavor and tannin from the grape skins. When the proper extraction had been achieved, the temperature on the tanks was slowly raised so that fermentation could begin. The grapes was tasted daily to assess tannin structure and fruit character and was lightly pressed after a 23 day fermentation, with the free run juice going to 100% French oak barrels. Ana used only 30% new oak to preserve the freshness and delicacy of the fruit. After 22 months in oak, the wine was blended and bottled.
VINEYARD NOTES
The grapes sourced for this wine came from the Alexander Valley AVA, in Sonoma County. Ideal for Bordeaux varieties like Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon, the summer daytime temperatures regularly reach the high 80s and 90s, while the evening fog creates a rapid cooling effect that protects the fruits flavor and boosts acidity. Extremely rocky, well-drained soils produce grapes that are small, and with intense flavors.
VINTAGE NOTES
This vintage will be remembered for high quality, but low yields. The 2015 growing season started out with unseasonably warm temperatures in the late winter and early spring. This resulted in an early bud break and bloom. Colder temperatures in May (during the peak of bloom) caused uneven fruit set which ultimately resulted in a much smaller crop in 2015, compared to the three abundant years that preceded it. As a result, our winemaker worked hand-in-hand with our vineyard crews and also employed new technologies, like optical sorting, to ensure we picked and crushed only the best quality grapes. The harvest was one of the earliest on record in Napa Valley, beginning on July 31st with the picking of grapes for our sparkling wine program, and concluding for us October 22nd. While ongoing drought was of great concern, we were fortunate to have received enough rain in the winter to fill our reservoirs.

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