Vineyard: Mokelumne Glen
Bottling Date: January 25, 2016
Release: March 1, 2016
Production: 23 cases
Drinking Window: 2015-2020
In 2015 we decided to play off of our 2014 Zweigelt, and pick the Blaufrankisch earlier (August 7th), and also include the stems in the fermentation. The result is a wine that is both more fresh, and more herbal, with plenty going on. The fermentation went fairly quickly, with native yeast kicking off after a couple days, and finishing after a week. The wine was transferred to old oak barrels where it completed malolactic fermentation. I allowed this wine to age without sulfur as long as possible, but it became clear that a small addition was going to be necessary, and it was made after about 2 months in barrel. This small dose was enough to stabilize the wine, and no further additions were necessary prior to bottling. The finished juice was bottled unfiltered and unfined, capturing the vitality of this young wine.
The 2015 Blaufrankisch is definitely the funkiest wine of the 2015 bunch. Cloudy purple in color, the nose shows aromas of violets and plum, with another note that I have alternated between calling brine, sea air, or even kelp. The palate shows high-toned cranberry, green tea, and a briary, herbal component. Despite all these funky flavors, the texture of the wine is silky and the finish is long and piercing. This wine is definitely for those who enjoy something very different, and don't mind earthy, herbal flavors. Sour beer drinkers should enjoy this one.