Intrigue Melange 2014
Intrigue , a Left Bank style Red Wine blend (Mélange) created from our California vineyards and inspired by Château Haut-Brion.
Intrigue means to arouse the curiosity or interest by unusual, fascinating or compelling means.
As the first "Claret" Haut-Brion wines became the world's first luxury brand intriguing to the rest of the world who then began to appreciate fine Bordeaux wines.
The blend of Intrigue varies according to the character of each vintage, however, Cabernet Sauvignon always predominates to give Intrigue its rich tannin, its wealth of aroma and flavor, while Merlot, an inseparable companion, brings suppleness, roundness and exceptional length.
Decant for one hour or more. Tasting temperature: 65°F
Deep, dark red color. The truly beautiful bouquet has notes of black fruit such as blackberry and blackcurrant along with chocolate, coffee, and ash overtones all deeply buried in a single breath . The wine shows smooth, well-structured tannin on the palate, combining power and elegance with full, luscious body from beginning to end.
Cases produced = 148. Our vineyards are farmed to the code of sustainable agriculture using traditional techniques, based on strict control of yields, manual harvests and numerous quality specific tasks that are carried out by hand throughout the year.
Little or no chemical fertilizers are used. Selection and planting of cover crops and their return to the soil provides additional organic nutrients allowing our vines to reach an advanced age and produce outstanding grapes.
The Appellation is North Coast because we wanted to use the best grapes regardless of where they were grown.
In France, Cabernet Sauvignon does best on the Left Bank while Merlot and Cabernet Franc is better from the sandy clay soils of the Right Bank.
In California, Cabernet Sauvignon grows best in the heat of Napa’s mountains while Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Malbec thrive in the slightly cooler, sandy clay soils of Sonoma.
When we mix these applications they become “North Coast.”
The grapes from each plot are fermented in separate five-ton, temperature-controlled, stainless steel fermentation tanks in order to preserve the identity of the terroir.
Upon completion of alcoholic fermentation, the wines are tasted before being drawn off to the fine wine tanks. The free run juice and the pomace are separated and the pomace is pressed independently in order to extract the “press wine” separately.
A second fermentation phase, called malolactic fermentation, takes place in tank before the wine is transferred into barrels.
The ageing phase commences in the cellar and takes 20 months during which the cellar master racks the wines regularly in order to clarify them naturally. No fining agents are used so the wines remain vegan.
While ageing, several tastings from each barrel are carried out. Blending takes place after the individual wines have aged in barrel for a little over twelve months and have started to show their development.
The blends are then returned to barrel for around eight months allowing them to integrate into a wine with its own unique characteristics.
All of the barrels come from French cooperages with whom we have had an association for over twenty years. Selected from two French forests, the wood is air dried and coopered over a five-year production period and finished with a special “toasting” suited to the delicate characteristics of our wines.