On the palate, flavors of beautiful rich blackberry, warm vanilla, toasted coffee and black cherry are finished with firm but refined tannins.
The 2020 growing season and harvest was near normal in some ways and very unusual in others. Rainfall was 12% below average with the bulk of the storms occurring in early winter and early spring. Spring frost threats were mild. Vine growth and berry development was normal through spring. Then, Summer brought relentless heatwaves that lasted for days at a time. Wildfires began erupting throughout the state and the region was inundated with smoke from fires burning both to the north and south of Paso Robles from early August through the end of September. This pattern slowed berry development. October was warm and dry, which helped to quickly mature clusters.
Harvest was condensed and flurried as most fruit ripened at the same time. Yields were down by 20% but initial and thorough testing showed no damage from the smoke and very promising quality.
After harvest, vineyard lots were fermented individually in stainless-steel tanks for 10- 14 days. Extended macerations and carefully managed pump overs enhanced the extraction of color and tannin.
The lots were aged separately for 10 months in a combination 25% once used French Oak and 75% neutral French and American oak. The initial blend was assembled in mid-Summer 2021 and aged an additional three months in 100% new French Oak. The wine was racked only twice during its cellar life, with the final racking occurring just prior to bottling.