2009 Cabernet Franc Alegría Vineyards
Best of Class & Gold Medal - 2012 California State Fair Wine Competition
94 points - 2012 California State Fair Wine Competition
Rich aromatics of spicy berry, dark cherry, and currant blend with toasty oak and herbal notes. The smooth entry reveals a lively essence of spice that textures the wine and enhances the flavors of juicy blackberry, red and black currant, and vanillin oak. Seamless integration of the delicious flavors with a fine tannin structure creates this classic Cabernet Franc.
This delicious wine—a field blend of Cabernet Franc with Petit Verdot and Merlot—was produced from 18-year-old vines we planted at Alegría Vineyards in 1991.
In our very cool Russian River Valley microclimate, the fog rolls up the Russian River Valley from the Pacific and lingers until late morning, so the vines often see only half a day of sunshine.
In 2009, a cooler than normal summer, and rain October 13, made the vintage especially challenging. We didn’t rush to harvest the grapes before the rain because we knew from 14 prior harvests that we would be rewarded if we let the grapes continue to ripen through October. Through the very long growing season, the grapes slowly developed elegant aromas and flavors, which were concentrated by the exceptionally low yield of only 1.6 tons per acre.
We co-fermented the three varieties in an open top fermenter using Bordeaux yeast and then pressed to barrels for 19 months of aging. To respect the vintage’s delicate flavors, we limited new oak to only 20% of the barrels. Additional aging in bottle before release has allowed the tannins to smooth out and the flavor components to integrate.