100% Hillside Grown, Old Vine Carignane
Black Cherry, licorice, and floral notes on the nose. On the palate figs, cocoa, medium bodied with lively acidity, elegant tannins. Finishes with a hint of mint and juniper berry. JO (3/18)
A hot, dry summer provided ideal conditions for these old carignane vines. All five blocks were harvested the first two weeks of September. Following malolactic, we tasted and selected the Front, Top, and House blocks for their richness and firm acidity. This outstanding carignane is layered with dark fruit, mineral, and spice. Enjoyable now, it will continue to develop over the next five years.
Stan Buchignani’s ranch is located on Dutcher Creek Road, in the hills on the far western edge of the Alexander Valley appellation. Stan’s grandfather, Dominico Cerruti, first planted a five acre block in 1927; his father, Dino, added seven acres in the 1940’s and planted the last in the early 1950s. The vineyard’s climate bears a strong resemblance to that of upper Dry Creek Valley three miles to the south, where days are quite warm. Fog, which tends to hang low in the valley, burns off sooner in the hills. Carignane from the Buchignani Ranch is complex, its fine structure much like that of a field-blend zinfandel.
Rainfall: 38 inches
Weather: A wet December and January helped ease the drought which emphatically ended in March. Cool weather in April reduced our crop a bit. Harvest started early September and finished mid-month.
Harvest Dates: 5-10 September
Grapes: Average brix 23.7˚
Fermentation: Natural primary and secondary. Twice daily pump-overs. Pressed at eleven days.
Barrels: Air-dried american oak barrels (10% new, 35% one and two years old, 55% three and four years old).
Aging: Nine months in barrel
Buchignani ranch, hand-harvested, sustainably grown grapes; destemmed and crushed; fermented on the native yeasts, followed by a full malolactic on the naturally occurring bacteria; oak from barrel aging; minimum effective sulfur for this wine (35 ppm at crush, 75 ppm over the course of aging); pad filtered at bottling. In keeping with our philosophy of minimal intervention, this is the sum of our actions.
Average Rating: 88.7
No. of Tasting Notes: 57
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