Arguably the most important red wine grape in the world, a distinguished Cabernet Sauvignon is one of life’s great pleasures. We choose our Cabernet sites carefully: warm days with lots of sunshine, cool nights to preserve the balance of the fruit, well-drained soils, and gentle slopes. These elements allow us to produce exceptional Cabs year in and year out. Our 2013 is a dark, structured wine brimming with aromas of black fruit and plum with notes of vanilla and oak and a hint of tobacco. Full-bodied layers of blackberry and blueberry are framed by elegant tannins and a slight herbal note on the finish. Rich, soft and round, this wine has beautiful structure and vibrancy that will allow it to age for a decade or more.
The Cabernet grapes were sourced from our estate San Lucas and Hames Valley Vineyards. San Lucas is a postcard-perfect vineyard, with gorgeous rolling topography, sunshine-filled days, and cool nights. Hames is located at the southern edge of Monterey County and has a climate characterized by a high day-to-night temperature differential, with a variation of up to 50° quite common. Each vintage, these two vineyard sites duke it out for the Cabernet title, with San Lucas getting the edge in our 2013 blend. The 2013 growing season was about as perfect as a winemaker could wish—mild temperatures throughout the spring, a warm but not overly hot summer, and sunny conditions that held until the last grape was picked. Ideal harvest conditions allowed us to let the grapes hang until optimum ripeness was reached. On the heels of an excellent 2012 vintage, it exceeded our expectations in every way.
The grapes were handpicked, destemmed and crushed into small bins for fermentation. Fermentation was carried out in small lot, open-top fermenters. The cap was punched down 3 times per day at the height of fermentation to gently increase extraction of color and phenolic compounds. The juice was racked clean to barrels for secondary malolactic fermentation and aging. Barrel aged for 20 months, each lot was tasted and individual barrels were selected for inclusion in the final blend. The wine is bottled unfiltered, in order to preserve the tannin structure and aromatics.