The 2018 Cabernet Franc Reserve presents prodigious aromas of plum, cherry and sandalwood with hints of rose petal. A sleek, polished texture unfolds with seamless layers of blue and red fruits. Trailing accents of cedar, cinnamon, eucalyptus and forest floor emerge on a smooth, mouthfilling finish, leaving a lasting impression of both breadth and elegance.
The 35-acre Brick Barn estate vineyard lies just north of the Santa Ynez River in a largely unexplored winegrowing corridor near the city of Buellton in the western Santa Ynez Valley. Here, persistent sun exposure ensures ripe flavors, while the Pacific Ocean—just 10 miles away—delivers daily cooling that maintains fruit acidity and structure. Our Cabernet Franc is grown in a 2.6-acre block situated along an upper highland at an elevation of 550 feet. Here, rocky loam and limestone soils impart qualities of intensity and finesse. This block is planted entirely to Clone 332, which is prized for its sturdy tannins, beautiful spiciness and Bordeaux-style profile. Perhaps more than any other grape variety, Cabernet Franc exemplifies what is special about the terroir of the Brick Barn estate vineyard.
After harvesting, the fruit was destemmed and cold soaked, then fermented in small 1.5-ton bins over a period of two weeks. At the conclusion of fermentation, the must was gently pressed and settled. The wine was then racked to French oak barrels, where it aged for 26 months to achieve full integration. At this point, Winemaker Adrian Bolshoi tasted through all of the barrels, selecting 10 standouts for special reserve treatment. These barrels—which featured 75 percent new oak—underwent an additional four months of maturation prior to blending and bottling. The resulting Cabernet Franc is distinguished by its exceptional depth and roundness.
Food Pairing Notes
The 2018 Cabernet Franc Reserve is an ideal wine for a special meal. Recommended pairings include winter vegetable beef stew; veal roast with mushrooms; and herb-roasted rack of lamb.