2009 Duckhorn Vineyards Napa Valley Cabernet Franc
At Duckhorn Vineyards, we have been working with Napa Valley Cabernet Franc for over a quarter century, exploring its ability to add elegance and complexity to our blends and its capacity to produce stand-alone wines of stature and sophistication. Incorporating both valley and mountain-grown fruit with an emphasis on older vines, low yields and warmer vineyards, our Cabernet Franc offers beautiful varietal notes of dark cherry, raspberry and red currant with hints of tobacco leaf and graphite.
Varietal Content: 76% Cabernet Franc, 19% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Merlot; Cooperage: 100% French oak Chateau-style barrels (60 gallons); Age of Barrels: 60% new, 40% second vintage
This wine is one of my favorite wines of the vintage, filled with pure, focused Cabernet Franc aromatics of red currant, cherry, raspberry, spearmint and lavender bloom. The red fruit flavors continue on the palate, where they are complemented by elements of mulberry, volcanic ash, roasted chestnut, tobacco leaf and graham cracker. These flavors, combined with a beautiful texture, linger and leave a lasting impression.
From our first Semillon and Sauvignon Blanc blocks to our final red-varietal Estate picks, our 2009 harvest spanned more than two months. Though the 2009 growing season presented certain challenges—from early shatter to late-season rain—a thoughtful response in the vineyards yielded smaller-than-normal crops of high-quality fruit. This response included aggressive leafing, an early thinning protocol and a heavy field sort to select only the most desirable grapes.