The 2018 Cabernet Franc opens with exquisite dark red fruit aromas accentuated by hints of cinnamon, mocha and rose petal. A smooth, mouthfilling texture delivers supple flavors of black cherry, blueberry, plum and cedar with notes of oak spice and eucalyptus. Fine tannins and fresh acidity add lift to a soft, velvety finish.
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 prior to bottling. Twenty percent of the barrels featured new oak for enhanced dimension and texture.
Food Pairing Notes
The 2018 Cabernet Franc is a versatile wine that pairs well with rich red meats as well as softer fare such as roast chicken, and lamb and mint risotto.