Fermenting on the stems adds such an incredible backbone to the already firm tannin that Boushey grows. One cannot use enough stems and honestly if someone was willing to give me their old Boushey stems…we’d throw them in there. The stem tannin is so incredibly delicate and brings a savory note that just cannot be found in the skins alone. Sage, lavender oil, and rosemary are all, in my opinion, extracted from the stems. They are found in volumes from Boushey. It is just a happy wine grown by two of the most conscientious growers in the state, Dick and Luanne Boushey.
Fred is a deep blue-based red with a purple hue wine opens with the aromas of stem tannin, currents, bacon, blackberries, and lavender oil. The medium acidity is a more gentle background for the secondary notes of the fruit. The Sunday morning bacon nose has hints of tobacco and cedar. Flavors of brambly fruits, current and lavender oil persist in the mouth. The stem tannin (65% whole cluster) leaves a lovely texture on the extremely long finish.
The 2017 Night Owl Estate Blend is a more Merlot-dominated cuvée that checks in as 56% Merlot, 21% Cabernet Franc, 16% Petit Verdot, and the rest Cabernet Sauvignon. Aged in 40% new barrels, it's still vibrant purple/ruby-colored and has a Pomerol-like bouquet of ripe black cherries, cassis, dried violets, tobacco, and damp earth. Ethereal, medium to full-bodied, with beautiful tannins and considerable elegance, drink it any time over the coming 10-15 years.
More Pauillac notes of cassis, tobacco, and cedar pencil emerge from the medium-bodied 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Owl & Crown, which has a balanced, pure, elegant texture, ripe tannins, and a great finish. It's another classy wine that will keep for 15+ years, if you're so inclined. There are a scant 268 cases produced.
Umm…why is your Grenache so light in color? Because traditionally, Grenache should be translucent enough to read your watch through it. As we have said in the past, do not be fooled by the color. There is quite a bit of skin and stem tannin holding the flavor of this Grenache. Layers of dried herbs like bay and rosemary sit on top the orange peel and cherry. The medium acidity offers a nice balance and finish.
Well. Well. Well. Malbec. It is that Labrador retriever who lives in your neighborhood and barks all the time only to discover he just loves everyone *that* much. Fairly difficult to farm, hard to watch ferment because of its awkward H2S spikes while the yeast knows full well, they are sitting on a massive pile of yeast assumable nitrogen. Then it finds the bottle and like a giant lap dog, sits on the palate so comfortably. The 2016 Malbec Amparo is 100% Malbec that spent 23 months in 40% new French. Blueberries and violets dance with a slight cranberry note and pillow oak tannins.
Every year, without fail, the tank during fermentation smells like a freshly carved pumpkin. We have no idea why this is the case. It cannot be the clone because we have the same clone from the same nursery at the Estate Vineyard (Fred). It must come from Boushey. It is one of the best things about harvest and always seems like an old friend coming for a visit. For the first time I think you can taste a hint of it in the finished wine. Just fills your heart with goodness like the Boushey’s who farm it.
Nose of smoked meat, soy sauce and crushed gravel. The smoked meat persists in the mouth, but accented by juniper berries, dried plum, blackberries and olives coat the palate. This wine begs for a lamb chop or steak. The stem and skin tannin bolster the medium acidity. As with most of our wines, please decant. Optimum drinking window is from 2020 to 2028.
Made from 49% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12% Cabernet Franc, and 9% Petit Verdot, the 2016 Night Owl Estate Blend reveals a deep ruby/plum color as well as rocking notes of black cherries, spiced blackberries, dried herbs, and chocolate. It's ripe, fleshy, medium to full-bodied, and beautifully balanced, with a great finish. It’s another beautiful wine from Anna Schafer.
Nose…….Slight reduction, wet rock and peony flower.
Mouth…..The floral quality pursists in the mouth held up by soft round tannins, medium acidity. We continued to use a spontenous fermentation which in the tanks smells like roast acorn squash with a sprinkle of brown sugar. Although that primary note subsides in the wine, there is an earthy sweet character. We build our wines with bottle age in mind, so please decant. Optimum drinking window is 2020 – 2026.
The 2014 Fred is a brighter and more high toned than its predecessors. It is obvious from the moment it leaves the bottle with its bright red complexion. It still showcases the usual lavender oil and bright nose of the Tablas Creek clone, but it is expressing more red fruit notes. Bouncy and bright in the mouth while round and plush tannins maintain through to the end.
The 2014 Red Wine Blend Night Owl comes from the estate vineyards and is a blend of 43% Merlot, 34% Cabernet Sauvignon, 13% Cabernet Franc and the balance Petit Verdot. Its deep purple/ruby-tinged color is followed by a terrific bouquet of cassis, ripe black cherries, licorice and wild herbs. Medium to full-bodied, supple and polished on the palate, with good acidity, it's another fabulous wine.