2018 Bismark Malbec 750ml
Vineyards: Our Bismark Mountain Ranch is in the Moon Mountain District Sonoma County appellation, high above the city of Sonoma and San Pablo Bay. Here on the southwestern flanks of the Mayacamas Mountains we grow eight acres of Malbec on terraces that follow the contours of the northwestern side of the ranch. We began planting in 1991 and continue to fine tune our mix of cultivars to this day. This is steep ground; shared with Creosote bush, Grey pine, coyote and mountain lion. Topographically it is similar to the Douro. Windy, sun drenched yet moderate in temperature, Bismark grudgingly produces grapes with an intense, deeply concentrated flavor. Bismark’s unique terroir is both fierce and alluring.
Vintage 2016: Following adequate winter rains, the 2016 growing season began early again as the trend toward warmer winters continues. There was almost no frost pressure and the season progressed without significant weather worries. A single heat spike in July was short lived. This was followed by a glorious, easy ripening August and September that allowed the grapes to hang until late September. The grapes for the Bismark Mountain Malbec were harvested on September 27, 2016, at an average of 29.9 o Brix
Winemaking: Our 2016 Bismark Malbec was sorted, destemmed and crushed to tank. The grapes arrived warm, promoting early color extraction, and prompting early inoculation. The wine was pressed sweet, finished fermentation in tank, before a mid-October barreling. Ageing was sur lie in a combination of 50% new Hungarian, 38% new French and 12% new American Oak barrels.
Tasting Notes: As opaque as basalt, this Malbec clings to the glass while delivering intense aromas of plum, dried blueberry, anise, Darjeeling tea and shizo. Flavors deliver more, adding cardamom, cold brew coffee, sage, vanilla and huckleberry. Texturally it is posh and overstuffed, and surprisingly, given its density, without an arête of tannin in sight. (tasted 1/18/19).
Variety: 76% Malbec, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Cabernet Franc
Vineyard Location: Bismark Mountain blocks 26 Malbec, Cab blocks 3 & 6, Cab Franc block 10. Moon Mountain District Sonoma County
Age of Vines: 12-25 years
Titratable Acidity: 0.58 g/100 mL
Residual Sugar: 0.2%
Avg. Brix at Harvest: 29.9o
Fermentation: 100% Barrel Fermented
Malolactic Fermentation: 100%
Length/Type of Aging: 21 months in barrel
Oak Types: 100% New French, Hungarian and American oak coopered by Nadalie, French oak coopered by Remond, Trust, Boutes and Nadalie
Bottling Date: August 8, 2018
Number of Cases: 134