2017 Isthmus

Vintage Notes:

2017 began with a very wet winter and spring. From November 2016 through May 2017, we received sixty inches of rainfall, approximately twice the precipitation of a normal year. Bud break started at the end of March, and the spring’s rains allowed for healthy canopy growth. The vines thrived in early June with the switch to warmer, drier conditions. This set the stage for uniform flowering, ensuring a good fruit set. The weather progressed to a pattern of frequent heat spikes through July, August and into Labor Day. It was the hottest summer we have recorded. Still, we were able to farm twenty percent of our vineyards without irrigation. Harvest began in late August, with the core occurring in late September and early October. 2017 will be defined by lush, bright fruit with ripe tannins and ample acidity. We were fortunate to harvest prior to the wildfires that began October 8th.


Tasting Notes:

Dark ruby in hue, this wine's complex nose of fresh black cherry is accompanied by a background bouquet of mint, forest floor, spice and cedar. A soft, inviting entry displays fresh red and black fruits on the midpalate that carries through to a long finish. While soft and round on the edges, the core of the wine remains persistent and complex. This contrast yields a wine that will provide pleasure and accessibility in the near term, as well as the potential to gain complexity and depth with cellaring over the next ten years.


Technical Notes:

  • Blend: 71% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15& Merlot, 12% Cabernet Franc, 2% Petit Verdot
  • Appellation: Sonoma Valley
  • Vineyards: 62% Hamel Family Ranch, 35% Nuns Canyon Vineyard
  • Harvest Dates: 9/4/17 – 10/6/17
  • Production: 1,263 Cases
  • Fermentation: 73% Stainless Steel Tanks, 17% French Oak Tanks, 10% Concrete Tanks
  • Aging: 14 Months in 50% New French Oak Barrels, 50% Neutral French Oak Barrels and then 6 Months in Concrete Tanks
  • Bottling Date: 6/18/19
  • Alcohol: 14.5%

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