Clarissa Vin Rouge 2005
There is aromatic purity and depth here, expressive of our estate fruit which in this case is Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon.
Originally designed by Bill to drink without food this wine nevertheless is excellent paired with simple, direct foods such as hamburger, steak, dense white fish and white meats, like chicken or pork.
The color is a very deep ruby-red. The powerful bouquet is dominated by very ripe black fruit aromas such as plum, blackcurrant, and blackberry. Roasted notes of coffee, mocha, and caramel are also perceptible, as well as ones like leather and truffle that come with age. In addition, elegant hints of violet and even coconut come to the fore, along with attractive, well-integrated oak. The intense, complex bouquet leaves an impression of great freshness.
The wine starts out this way, as well as, elegant, rich, and concentrated on the palate. It is quite full-bodied with very ripe fruit that prevails over tertiary aromas from barrel ageing. The balance is remarkable, the tannin opulent, and the finish tight and extremely long. A gracious and very rich vintage that can be enjoyed now or for many years to come.
Cases produced = 455
Winter rains gave way to a dry, mild March in 2005 then began again with record-setting precipitation late into the growing season delaying bloom and set. The summer months were cool and pleasant with few heat spikes. Fog and cool temperatures were a concern heading into September as sugar levels were yet to rise in all varieties. Warm, nearly perfect conditions arrived with an Indian Summer making for a later than average harvest, providing fruit with extended hang and ultimately realizing excellent sugar development and balanced acids with a larger than average crop of what could be signature vintages from Sonoma and Napa Valley.
French Oak for 22 months, approximately 40% new, 40% one use and the balance neutral.