2016 Immortal Estate Cabernet “The Slope”
“The Immortal Estate vineyard lies within an enclosed valley on steep mountainside slopes with mostly eastern and southern exposures at elevations ranging from l l 00 to 1700 feet. The soils are a complex mixture of uplifted alluvium and decomposed volcanic material typical of the Mayacamas Range and vary throughout the vineyard, which is on steep, mostly terraced slopes. The lean soils and steep slopes naturally limit vine vigor and give remarkably small-berried fruit. Although the vineyard is usually above the fog and sees warm days, the site is protected from inland heat and receives ocean cooling from early morning and late afternoon breezes that maintain our moderate growing temperatures somewhat cooler than Spring Mountain directly to the east. The extended growing day at moderate temperatures gives the fruit well developed tannins and rich texture yet preserves the complex fruit characters and natural acidity.
“Vineyard blocks were selected for harvest by taste, selecting subsections of rows for any harvest day. The vineyard was harvested seven times over two weeks, responding to the varying development of different aspects, elevations and rootstocks. Hand harvested and meticulously sorted, the fruit was allowed to cold soak prior to fermentation and further post fermentation maceration on the skins for a total of 31 to 42 days depending on the lot. The wines were pressed to 75% new french oak where they underwent malolactic fermentation. Individual barrels from five lots were selected for the final blend. These wines were racked a total of three times during elevage and bottled unfined and unfiltered in April of 2019.
“Layers of black fruit, cherry, dried cranberries, spicecake, interwoven with sweet pipe tobacco, dark muscovado sugar, cocoa powder, raspberry leaf and hibiscus tea. Concentrated and intense, this mountainside Cabernet entices with its sweet fruit, supple palate and rich complexity. Accessible in its youth, it will continue to evolve for decades.
“Starting with the 2016 Slope, this beauty is all Cabernet Sauvignon that saw 28 months in 75% new French oak. Dense purple-hued with a rocking bouquet of blackcurrants, sagebrush, sappy green herbs, lead pencil, and tobacco, it hits the palate with a mammoth-sized personality that carries lots of tannins, a plush, sexy texture, no hard edges, and a great finish.” – Jeb Dunnuck