This limited bottling offers the opportunity to discover the intriguing personality of Cabernet Franc, which is a variety often used in blending Bordeaux-style wines. We sourced Cabernet Franc from the Tamagni Vineyard on the northeast side of Napa Valley, just south of Calistoga. Two favorite pairings: pancetta-wrapped beef filet with roasted Brussels sprouts, and portobella and spinach lasagna layered with smoked provolone cheese.
“This is a very structured cabernet franc with lots of fruit and chewy tannins. Full body and very rich with a wealth of wood maturation and intensity. Riper style. Drink or age." - James Suckling, December 2017
This limited bottling offers the opportunity to discover the intriguing personality of Cabernet Franc, which is a variety often used in blending Bordeaux-style wines. Our 2014 Cabernet Franc is incredibly expressive with effusive dark black berry and black cherry aromas, with subtle hints of dark mocha, savory bay leaf, sweet sage and toasted oak spice. On the palate, the flavors are rich and mouth filling with an enveloping silky texture showcasing multi-dimensional dark-fruit and spice expression. Well-integrated oak character reminiscent of baking spices, toasted almond, and roasted coffee bean fill out the profile, while candied black cherry lifts the aromas and lingers on the deliciously long finish. The refined tannins, a signature of the Calistoga appellation, have just the right amount of 'grip' to stand up to sizzling steaks, roasted pork loin rubbed with herbs, lamb kebabs, and other boldly flavored entrees, or aged cheeses.
Dry, early and shaking is how 2014 will be remembered in Napa Valley, yet it had a silver lining with small, concentrated grapes and high quality. February's rains brought the total rainfall up from low to adequate, helping to relieve three years of drought conditions. Warm temperatures promoted early budbreak in spring and accelerated grape maturation. Just as harvest began, a dramatic 6.0 earthquake shook Napa Valley awake on August 24. We finished the very compact, plentiful harvest by mid-October and celebrated the vintage's ripe, flavorful grapes.
Exceptional Cabernet Franc grapes from Tamagni Vineyard, which is located along the Silverado Trail just south of Calistoga, were the catalyst for our decision to make this special bottling. Cabernet Franc is often used to enhance the framework of Bordeaux-style wines, but this warm vineyard site, with its well-draining, low-vigor, rock-and-clay soils, yields a wine with all the elements to shine as the primary grape variety. A small amount of Cabernet Sauvignon, from Hewitt Vineyard in Rutherford, completes this wine's myriad of flavors.
After hand harvesting the fruit and then hand sorting it twice at the winery, we gently destemmed the grapes to retain at least 60 percent whole berries. Three days of cold soaking before fermentation gently extracted the deep purple color and rich varietal flavors from the skins. Following fermentation, extended skin contact and gentle pressing, the wine completed malolactic fermentation in barrels to round out the acidity. Barrel aging married the rich Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon fruit flavors with toasty oak tones.
Before starting at Provenance, Chris traveled the world to work harvests in many areas including Germany and Australia and returned to school to earn his Masters degree from the University of California, Davis, in 2002.
"Winemaking is about expressing the character of the place. Each vineyard has it own distinct personality. During the winemaking process we try to highlight and polish the best attributes while smoothing out any rough edges. Whether we blend fruit from different vineyards or emphasize a single vineyard block, our goal is to get all the grapes to play nice with each other. When we're successful the final wine is a harmonious expression of origin--whether that origin is a single vineyard, multiple vineyards, and appellation or a sub appellation."
|Oak Treatment||22 months, 100% barrel aged, 100% French (50% new), (Medium and medium-plus toast levels)|
|Blend||96% Cabernet Franc, 4% Cabernet Sauvignon|
|Case Production||453 cases|