2013 Sonoma Valley "Pagani Ranch" Alicante Bouschet
78% Alicante Bouschet
Although we work with Alicante Bouschet nearly every vintage, it’s been a long nine years since we last bottled one on its own. But there was no denying the quality of our 2013 Alicante, courtesy of the 93-year-old vines at Pagani Ranch. The wine was simply too good to fully blend away. One of our last lots of the year, the fruit was fully destemmed and cold-soaked for five days before inoculation with a German isolate of yeast called Assmanhausen. (I’m sure you can guess what we call this yeast in the winery. Cosmo Kramer would be proud! ;-) After 24 days on the skins the wine was pressed to mostly older, neutral barrels and bottled unfined and unfiltered 16 months later.
Impenetrably black in color. Can a wine be any darker? Powerful, concentrated aromas of lusciously ripe blackberries spill from the glass. I’m reminded of my childhood when I would help pick (well, mostly I would eat) wild blackberries in the forest with one of my older sisters. On entry, full-bodied with flavors of blackberry preserves coating the palate. Finishes gently tannic and with surprising length. Alicante can often lack in some regard (short finish, too rustic) but not this one. This wine checks all the right boxes. Enjoy from 2016 through 2023. (MRO – 07/18/15)