This vineyard has always displayed an intense concentration of flavors due, in part, to the minuscule yields we receive. Flavors of plum, blackberry and tootsie roll dominate the palate, with balanced and structured acid and fine-grained tannins.
The Big Break vineyard was chosen for this Late Harvest Mourvèdre. It’s planted in deep sand-soil, which is dry-farmed and benefits from the drying winds that blow through Contra Costa County. The vineyard carried a light crop of grapes that ripened and dehydrated to a high sugar content. By the time the grapes arrived at the winery, the lot was 25% raisined.
Working with ultra-ripe raisiny fruit to make this delicious wine had its challenges. The yield of concentrated grape juice was about half of what we attained from the grapes we used to make our Mourvèdre table wines. The must began to ferment after three days in the tank. We choose not to add yeast to the tank instead we allow natural yeast to do the work. This age-old tradition of Fred Cline’s grandfather, is used to contribute complexity to the blend. Fermentation progressed and in a matter of three weeks the combination of alcohol and sugar caused the fermentation to draw to a close. We racked the wine to 30% new French oak allowing the fruit flavors to show through without being masked by the oak.