Tuesday, May 29, 2018
Husch Vineyards/Anderson Valley/Over The Mountain/Zinfandel And Cabernet/Zac Robinson
I recently spent a few days in the great Anderson Valley.One of my stops was the great Husch Vineyards.I meet with Zac Robinson,and really enjoyed this visit.We have a few different features with Zac,but I want to start with this feature on their Zinfandel and Cabernet.These wines are from vineyards in the Ukiah Valley,and still in beautiful Mendocino County.Husch Vineyards is a small, family owned and operated winery. It is the oldest winery in the Anderson Valley appellation, located in Mendocino County.A warmer growing region with many old vine vineyards,and amazing fruit.Let's check out the tasting notes and then pour a glass of each of these wines as we enjoy our new feature from Husch Vineyards. Husch Vineyards is a small, family owned and operated winery. It is the oldest winery in the Anderson Valley appellation, located in Mendocino County (Northern California) just 2 1/2 hours north of San Francisco. Under the direction of 3rd generation family members Husch produces 22 different wines , of which six are distributed nationally. Small lots of special wines are available exclusively at our tasting room, a converted pony barn dating back to the late 1800s. Quality is the key word at Husch: in the vineyards, in our winemaking and in our friendly customer service. It all starts in the vineyard. Our wines are made from grapes grown on vineyards managed by the winery, allowing us to bring consistent, high-quality fruit to the bottle. Making wine at Husch is a hands-on job: Winemaker Brad works with Yotilde to "punch down" the fermenting must of pinot noir. This process provides a gentle mixing of the solids (skins, pulp, seeds) and the grape juice. In the world of winemaking, the keys to success are the grapes and people that you work with. Thus the land, climate, and farming input are the most important factors for making high quality wines. Having been pear and grape farmers for three generations prior to purchasing the winery in 1979, our family already understood the most important aspect of winemaking. Here at Husch Vineyards, our wines are an extension of our farming heritage, amazing Mendocino terroir, and dedicated work force. Our first wine is the Old Vine 2016 Zinfandel. Husch’s Old Vine Zinfandel is grown at the historic Garzini Ranch in the warm Ukiah Valley. These gnarly, head pruned, old vines have low yields and intense flavors. Old Vine Zinfandel is one of Mendocino County’s treasures, and we are excited to showcase a part of what makes Mendocino County so special for grapes. Winemaking In 2016 El Niño brought the rain back to California and laid a good foundation for the growing season. We approached the vineyard with a meticulous strategy this year, and spent countless hours trimming the extra “wings” from the large fruit clusters and dropping the clusters that did not show the deep purple colors of perfectly ripe fruit. By the time we picked the grapes, probably 25% of the crop had already been dropped to the ground. We picked the grapes by hand in the early morning and started a ten month winemaking process. Tasting Notes Multifaceted and captivating our 2016 Old Vine Zinfandel is sure to enliven your everyday. Lofty aromas of candied raspberry, black cherry, plum, fruit leather, licorice, and holiday spice highlight the bouquet of the wine. Piquant flavors that parallel the aromas are held together with cohesive tannin and acid. A great wine for your next tailgate party, especially when paired with grilled meats and spicy foods. We have also opened the 2014 Reserve Cabernet. Husch’s Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon represents an "only the best" approach to winemaking. We carefully select the barrels, the fruit lots, and winemaking approach to yield the best possible Cabernet. In some years the wine doesn’t meet our highest expectation and we simply skip the vintage. When we do bottle a Reserve Cabernet you can always expect a wine with intense fruit, soft tannins, great balance and plenty of structure for aging. Winemaking 2014 was a dry and warm year leading to small and concentrated grape bunches. Field selections of clone 4, 6, 21, and 337 were hand-picked over the course of two weeks as each clone ripened. We fermented in small batches, then aged the wine for 24 months in small French and American oak barrels (75% new). Our favorite lots and barrels were blended together to make a wine that is layered, elegant, and structured for aging. Tasting Notes Our 2014 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon is compelling in every sense of the word. From the time you pull the cork till the last drop is enjoyed, the wine unfolds with a density of dark fruit aromas and flavors. Focused aromas and flavors of black cherry, mulberry, dark plums, and cassis, are noticed right out of the gate, while more subtle notes of tobacco leaf, coffee, crushed herbs, vanilla, and violets are noticed as you dig deeper in to the bottle. A fresh and rich mouthfeel give the wine the desired persistence needed to enjoy all the flavors. This wine will be a lovely component to your evening and be enhanced with foods such as wild elk short ribs, skirt steak, beat salad, or creamy cheeses. Are you ready?Time for a great feature with Zac Robinson .Cheers! Click here and join us at Husch Vineyards .