November 7, 2013 | Jeanette Trompeter
Cheers to a Very Good Year
It was dry, but 2013 looking like it's going to be a good year for Cabernet.
It's looking like 2013 is going to be one of those years you want a lot of in your wine cabinet or cellar. Cabernet growers along the Central Coast say the harvest of 2013 revealed a lot of virtues of a good year. At the top of the list: an early start to the growing season, long hang-time and near absence of inclement weather.Members of the Paso Robles CAB Collective (PRCC), an association of Cabernet Sauvignon and Bordeaux varietal producers in the Paso Robles AVA, recently joined fellow vintners and growers across California in assessing this year's harvest. "The climatic conditions on our mountain during the growing season contributed to smaller berries and fewer berries per cluster," said Daniel Daou, Winemaker and Owner at DAOU Vineyards. "These conditions have allowed us to generate phenolics in our wines that are, on average, thirty percent greater than in previous years. This means darker and more intense wines that will age well. A great year for Cabernet
Michael Barreto, Winemaker at Le Vigne Winery says the early and warm spring got the growing season off to a quick start. "Some cool stretches in the summer allowed varieties like Merlot to coast a bit and be ready for harvest around the same as an average year. However, for us, Cabernet Sauvignon came in around two weeks earlier than normal. Our harvest size was about average with nicely-sized clusters that should provide nice flavor and concentration."
Calcareous Winemaker, Jason Joyce says you may have to use a little patience with the 2013 vintage but it will be worth it. "All in all, at this earliest of stages in the wines' life, I could not be more enthusiastic about this vintage. It may not be until 2016 that these wines are ready to taste, but if there is enough patience to let natural aging run its course, this vintage has all the requisite fundamentals for the production of remarkable Bordeaux varietals."
Jeff Meier, Director of Wine-making for J. Lohr Vineyards & Wines added perhaps the most exciting vote of confidence about this harvest. "Given the phenomenal quality of our fermentations so far this harvest, and the color numbers we are recording, I'm reminded of the legendary 1997 vintage. While every vintage is unique, 1997 and 2013 were very similar in that we had ideal moderate weather from veraison onward with no significant heat events, factors that have contributed to the remarkable color of our red wines. This is especially true for our Cabernet Sauvignon, which is showing the voluptuous black currant and cherry flavors we love from warmer vintages. The fact that I'm even thinking about 1997 right now is a testament to how excited I am about this vintage."
Cheers to a very good year for your wine collection and the winemakers who make that possible!
To know more about the winemakers involved in the CAB collective assessment of 2013, click here.