The fruit for this cabernet was sourced from Seven Hills and Cockburn Ranch vineyards. Both these spots are ideal for Cabernet, but since they are on opposite sides of the Walla Walla Valley, they produce two totally different styles of Cabernet.
With such different growing conditions from these two vineyards, our harvest dates were quite different.
Seven Hills - 10/12
Brix 24.2 - pH 3.53 - TA 5.2 g/L
Cockburn - 10/23
Brix 24.6 - pH 3.51 - TA 5.17 g/L
Both these lots of Cabernets were fully destemmed into small 2 ton fermenters. They were inoculated with BM 45 yeast and the caps were punched down three times per day. The fermentation was long and slow and the wine was pressed when the tannin structure was ideal. The wine was then put into barrels, which included 25% new French oak.
We were able to work with Les Collines all year and secure four rows of great Syrah from Block 31. Four Rows is not a lot, which allowed us to grab some premium fruit.
Les Collines Vineyard with Milky Way
For this Syrah we did two separate harvest dates, 9/24/19 & 10/7/19 to capture different sugar and acid levels. (Learn more about harvest decisions from our Winemaking Videos)
Brix 23.1 - pH 3.52 - TA 5.4 g/L
Brix 24.5 - pH 3.55 - TA 5.0 g/L
This was an extremely fun wine to make and put together. Like already mentioned, we had two separate harvests (1st Pick & 2nd Pick) from our rows. From our 1st pick, we pulled away 400 lbs and sealed that fruit in a fermenter with dry ice (frozen CO2) for Carbonic Maceration. We co-fermented our first pick with 8% Viognier and 400 lbs Whole Cluster for 20% stem.
When we pulled the trigger on our 2nd Pick, 10/7. we brought out that fermenter that had been undergoingCarbonic Macerationand parked the fermenter under our destemmer. We used that Whole Cluster Carbonic Fruit for the stems for our 2nd Pick. This pick was co-fermented with 2% Viognier.
TheCapswere punched three times per day and the wines were pressed when the tannic structure was in line with our style. These were aged in french oak barrels for 14 months.
We decided on a specific block of Cab Franc from Seven Hills for our Rose. The most important thing is making sure the block is farmed specifically for Rose. We are extremely happy with this block and the ideal fruit it produces for our Rose.
We decided to pick this fruit on 9/8. The most important thing in making rose is the acid. We picked based solely on acid to make sure we preserved the crispness for this wine.
Traditionally, Syrah and Viognier grow well in similar areas. We love the Syrah we get from Les Collines and we decided to add the Viognier from the same vineyard. Les Collines is positioned perfectly to grow these two Rhone grapes.
This fruit was harvested on 9/13/2021. That was when the sugar/acid balance was perfect. Drew was sampling this fruit every two days to make sure it was picked at the exact right spot.
The fruit was immediately pressed and went into 3 neutral barrels. These barrels were all treated differently with three different strains of yeast to add complexity to the final product.
Want to learn about how we made our Viognier. Check out our B.T.S. Page.
MoonlapseTM is a blend of all the phases of the moon, and our Moonlapse wine is a blend of red wines from our cellar. At a lower price point, this wine give a "taste" of Moonbase wines that you can drink on a daily basis.
This delicious Petit Verdot comes solely from McClellan Vineyard - a terrific spot for Bordeaux varietals. This block of Petit Verdot is trained using a "Fan" training system. This allows for even ripening and soft smooth tannins for this grape.
This late ripener was picked on 10/21/20. The chemistry and flavor of the fruit was at the ideal spot.
Brix - 25.2
pH - 3.7
TA - 5.2 g/L
This ton of fruit came in and was fully desteemed. Then, went through a 24 cold soak before inoculation with BM 45 yeast. The cap was then punched down 3 times per day and was pressed after 10 days when the brix were around 3. This was the best opportunity to grab flavor, but not too many tannins.
For this wine we decided on specific rows in one on Washington's Best Vineyards. Ciel du Cheval on Red Mountain is a terrific site, especially for late ripening grapes such as Mourvèdre. We love the sandy soil, aspect on the vineyard, and ultimatley the heat that this vineyard receives.
Mourvèdre is a late ripener and needs a lot of heat to get fully ripe. Ciel du Cheval on Red Mountain provides a great spot for this grape. Our fruit was picked on 10/16 based solely on acid levels.
TA 5.2 g/L
Typical Mourvèdre doesn't have near the tannin structure as some if its Bordeaux counterparts. This Mourvèdre from Red Mountain is a little different so, we left the skins in contact for an extended time to extract more flavor, color, and backbone. This was then pressed and put into neutral puncheons for aging. The wine was never racked and then bottled as a single varietal.
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All of these wines were harvested at different times. Syrah is an early ripener whereas Grenache and Mourvedre tend to be later ripeners.
The Grenache and Mourvedre vineyards were picked specifically for this wine. Lonesome Springs is ideally suited for ripening Rhone grapes and I love Mourvedre from Ciel du Cheval. We knew we'd have an extra barrel of Les Collines Syrah for this blend, but that specific barrel was hand picked to make sure the balance was perfect.
The Mourvedre was saignee to concentrate colors, flavors, and aromas. There was a 48 hour cold soak to extract more anthocyanins from the skins before innoculation. All three wines were fermented and aged separately and blending happened 3 months before bottling to lets the flavors meld together.