Sacrosanct Cabernet Franc 2017
Released: December 2018
Bouquet: Berry, cherry and plum along with cigar box and sage.
Palate: Strawberries and raspberries carried by a tannic wave.
Food Pairings: Meat and cheese boards, as well as wild game or duck.
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The 2017 vintage had a slow start with cool days and a lot of precipitation leading to flooding. Bud break started around 14 days later than 2015 & 2016, only a few days off the 15-year average. As the season progressed, months of hot, dry conditions allowed for the vineyards to catch up and hit all the expected key developmental stages. With the drought conditions, forest fires hit the West Coast. Smoke provided the benefit of a buffer for heat through the intense summer sun, helping to moderate accumulation of sugars and loss of acid. This also led to humid days and increased disease pressure; extreme diligence was rewarded by healthy and clean fruit. The nights cooled off towards harvest, allowing for great evolution of fruit flavour without any spikes in sugars while maintaining a bracing acidity.
Some of the oldest grapes in the Valley, these Cabernet Franc grapes came from our Skaha Bench neighbours, Matheson Creek Farm. In late October, the fruit was hand harvested at 25.0° Brix, 6.8g/L TA, and pH 3.45, and hand destemmed into a clay amphora. The amphora was sealed and left for fermentation using only the indigenous yeast population. After 9 months on skins, the amphora was gravity drained and pressed using a small, ratchet-driven basket press. The wine settled for a week before the heavy sediment was racked off in preparation for bottling unfined and unfiltered.