Sometimes, one must bob. At other times, one must weave. In 2020, like most people across the world, we had to do both just about every day. Our new Grenache is a great example of how the year’s challenges sometimes turned out to be blessings in disguise.
For the first varietal Grenache in our lineup, we brought out the big guns. The big Venturi guns that is. Originally planted in the 1920s, Venturi vineyard rests at about 700 feet elevation just down the street from Testa Vineyard (where we source our Carignan) in Calpella, CA. Larry, the third generation of Tuscanian-descended grape growers, farms the head trained vines organically and sans irrigation. The Grenache here is Clone A, born of Château de Beaucastel in Châteauneuf-du-Pape by way of Tablas Creek Vineyard.
While wildfires in California are sadly no longer unusual, 2020 was a particularly challenging year when it came to being en fuego. While we were fairly certain that there would be no smoke taint at Venturi Vineyard, we knew that any kind of extended maceration would be asking for trouble if any problems arose. Thus an audible was called - we’ll do a carbonic ferment!
By going the carbo route we could pull the more gluggable, crunchy aspects of the Grenache out AND sleep soundly at night. What would have otherwise been a yummy plummy leather pie, we’re instead into lighter and brighter flavors like cranberries and blood oranges yumyumyumyum.
Always (and only) minimal Sulfites added.