Viking Bordeaux Blend 2013
Viking Estate Vineyard
Club Member Favorite
This Bordeaux-style blend is dominated by Cabernet Sauvignon from our Viking Estate Vineyard.
This Bordeaux-style blend is all about elevation and its extreme site. Cabernet Sauvignon dominates with the supporting cast making this a beautiful ensemble. The elevation effect of this mountain vineyard promotes UV exposure and a warm to cool temperature variation. Slope and poor chalk-rock soils contribute to vine stress.
Aromas: Violets, crème de cassis, graphite, cedar, dark chocolate
Flavors: Cranberry, blueberry, black cherry, sweet pipe tobacco, vanilla
Slate grilled rib eye with poblano pan fry, Moroccan chicken skewers with mint and grilled tomato, rosemary and garlic lamb chops.
The 16.5 acre Viking Vineyard is a true mountain site, located in the coastal influenced Paso Robles Adelaida District, 14 miles from the Pacific Ocean. Sitting on an extremely steep, south facing shelf of limestone, the site presents a challenging environment for growing grapes. Planted to three varieties, it is the focus of our Bordeaux program, emphasizing cabernet sauvignon (13 acres), and cabernet franc (1.5 acres) plus a unique small block of northern Rhône sourced Syrah (2 acres). The original vines date back to 1991 and were augmented with an additional 5 acres of cabernet sauvignon in 2000. Vine spacing is the tightest of all seven Adelaida Vineyards; 4 feet between vines and 8 feet between rows, 1361 vines/acre. Cabernet yields average 2 – 2.5 tons/acre, while the Syrah struggles to reach 1 – 1.5 tons/acre.
A further 9 acres of Bordeaux varieties, Cabernet Sauvignon (6 acres), Cabernet Franc (1 acre), Petit Verdot (1 acre), and Malbec (1 acre), were installed on a separate site in 2007, coming online in 2012. Grafted onto lime tolerant rootstock, the vines are drip irrigated and trained to a vertical shoot positioning system.
The 2013 vintage was the earliest vintage on record for Adelaida due to low winter rainfall (second consecutive drought year) and steady warmth throughout the growing season. The total yields were average and the quality of the fruit was excellent. We saw much to admire in 2013. The red berries had thick skins, which they synthesized as a result of several environmental and cultural factors, including sunlight, temperature, shoot positioning and low rainfall. The resulting wines have great color and extraordinary tannin. The white grapes benefited from cool nights, which helped retain their acidity, and careful farming, which kept leaf cover over the fruit to minimize sun damage. Our switch to night harvesting in 2013 kept the fruit nice and cool when it arrived at the winery.
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