This Cab Franc focused blend is well structured and perfectly balanced. Beautiful notes of lavender, raspberry, and cinnamon.
As we taste each individual lot of wine from the myriad of distinct blocks on our Bell Mountain Estate ranch, we discover that certain parts of the vineyard are best as components for small production blends. These micro blocks are identified and, over time and experimentation, they become part of our Small Lot Collection. These wines are 100% estate-grown with organic grapes, and limited in their release.
A feature that originally attracted Founders Chris James and Ames Morison to this unique piece of property was its distinctive similarities with France’s Bordeaux region. As a nod to that area and its style, our Right Bank wine was created. As is tradition, Cabernet Franc is a principal component of the blend.
Our 2014 Right Bank Red provides a wonderful example of a harmonious blend of two different grape varieties. The Cabernet Franc provides the high notes of lavender, raspberry, sea spray, cinnamon, and perfume, while the smaller percentage of Cabernet Sauvignon contributes boysenberry, black pepper, and cinnamon. The judicious use of less than half new oak barrels provides the ideal backdrop of smokiness, caramel, and vanilla. This Cab Franc focused blend is well structured and perfectly balanced. There is a dynamic interplay between the acid and tannin which resonate off of each other before resolving into a long, silky finish. A friend of ours tried the wine and proclaimed, “This is why I drink wine”. I can’t think of higher praise than that.
Sunshine was the dominant theme for vintage 2014 with little rain throughout the growing season. Warm temperatures in late winter caused an early budbreak. Perfect weather in May (no wind or rain, plenty of sun) created ideal conditions for consistent bloom, veraison and ripening, which is what we hope for every year. A bit of rain in September suspended harvest momentarily giving our grapes the extra time they needed to mature fully on the vine. Harvest flew by and was completed on October 21st. Gorgeous color, floral aromatics, concentrated flavors, and a nice range of acidity are the hallmarks for this excellent vintage.