Our 2015 Reserve Cabernet was created in our small lot artisan cellar. Winemaker Greg Morthole employs techniques such as cluster pre-sorting, berry sorting, and extended maceration. With small tanks and equipment sized for the most discriminating vineyard selection process, our cellar is state of the art and represents the Klein family commitment to producing the finest wines possible.
Visitors to the winery often ask what "Reserve" Cabernet means to us. It's simple. Reserve means the winemaker's careful blend of individual Cabernet Sauvignon lots made from time tested, meticulously farmed sections of some of the very best vineyards in Alexander Valley. Select areas within each vineyard are hand harvested individually, fermented separately and aged in the finest French oak barrels. After about six months, each lot is tasted and graded and only the Cabernets that display depth, richness, intensity, and age worthiness are considered for Reserve Cabernet. The 100% Cabernet blend is then assembled, and the wine is returned to barrels to facilitate flavor integration. The wine is aged an additional 14 to 20 months, depending on the vintage, before bottling.
The 2015 vintage was warm overall, but cooler than the previous few years. Budbreak was very early, weeks ahead of average. Yields were very low, in some blocks half of what we'd normally harvest. The low yields led to sugars accumulating much faster in the clusters than the speed at which ripening was occurring. Cool and hot weather alternated the rest of the summer. The acidity and tannins in the berries remained firm as we were looking at the possibility of a record early harvest date, so we chose to let the sugars go, and waited for the acids to lower and for the tannins to soften. Satisfied with the flavors, and with all things in balance, we picked the four vineyards from mid to late September, when the fruit tasted best.