95+ | Jeb Dunnuck | June 2018
90+ | The Wine Advocate | August 2018
This high elevation Cabernet shows off abundant aromas of cassis, blackberry pie, and some spicy cinnamon stick. Fruit-forward flavors of dark berries, chocolate-covered cherry, and peppercorn unite for a big, solid wine. The generous structure is softened by a long, deep finish.
2015 brought an early and light harvest that began on August 10, the earliest date in St. Francis’ history. The year started out very warm and dry but then cool, damp weather in May hampered fruit set. Though the result was smaller, looser clusters on the vine, the warm and consistent summer that followed produced high-quality fruit with exceptional aromatics and concentrated flavors.
The fruit for this robust Cabernet Sauvignon comes from one of Sonoma’s newest AVAs -the Moon Mountain District of Sonoma County, a region striking for its high elevation vineyards and rugged, volcanic soil. Rising from 400 to 2200 feet on the western side of the Mayacamas, the Moon Mountain District has thin, fast-draining soil and hot, dry summer days, ideal conditions to grow deeply colored grapes with intense, concentrated flavors.
The grapes underwent a two-day cold soak to extract optimal color and flavor and each individual component was fermented separately to optimize structure and tannin integration. Secondary malolactic fermentation occurred in French oak barrels, 40% new, followed by 17 months of aging before final blending and bottling.