Rich, lush and structured, the 2013 vintage displays intense aromas flavors of blackberry, black currant, cassis and crushed violet. This wine is velvety with a smooth, lingering finish of toasty baking spices, vanilla and cocoa. Lay a few bottles down in your cellar to enjoy in 4 to 6 years.
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.
2013 was the kind of growing season that most would wish we could have every year: a dry, frost-free spring, a warm summer with minimal heat spikes, and a warm rain free autumn that allowed for picking the fruit perfectly mature. The warmth of the vintage made sure that harvest would begin earlier than normal, but cool evenings prevailed during the second week of September which kept sugar accumulation at an even pace and left acidity in the grapes. We started picking Reserve Cabernet blocks from our three hillside vineyards in Alexander Valley on September 13, and continued picking until the last few blocks from the steep backside of our Rockaway vineyard arrived at the winery on September 27. For many years we have selected the finest blocks from those three Alexander Valley vineyards to make our Reserve Cabernet, but this vintage marks the first time that we've used a substantial amount, just under 15%, from our prized new vineyard in the wild highlands of Sonoma County as part of the final blend. The Cabernet at this vineyard reaches a top elevation of 2000 feet, and ripens slightly earlier than the Alexander Valley vineyards due to the warmer night time temperatures. The new Cabernet adds structure and vibrancy of fruit, another layer of depth for our Reserve Cabernet. The blocks were picked from September 10 through 23.