2017 Division Cabernet Franc "Granit"
2017 Division Cabernet Franc “Granit”
Mae’s Vineyard Applegate Valley AVA
We love the Mae’s Vineyard (part of the Quady North Vineyards) in the Applegate Valley AVA in southern Oregon, and have worked with the grapes as the sole component of our Loire clones, dominated by a base of Cabernet Franc. This was our fifth year leasing the block of Mae’s Loire clone Cabernet Franc.
Grower/Owner, Herb Quady has become one of the best growers in the region who is doing all the right things with the fantastic Oregon pink granite bedrock based soils. The Quady site is relatively high in the hills above the Applegate river, and is generally warmer than the Willamette Valley. However, at high elevation, the Quady site is cooler and wetter than the Rogue Valley AVA at lower elevation and to the east. Herb grew up in the famed Quady Family in California’s Central Valley. He later became the vineyard manager for Randall Graham’s Bonny Doon wine empire before coming north to southern Oregon with his sights on applying organic farming techniques to a region with largely undiscovered vineyard potential. His Mae’s Vineyard block slopes southeast into the Applegate Valley in one of the prettiest spots we’ve seen in the state. Loamy/clay and marine sediment overlay a large broken granite slab (yes granite!), which makes this a truly distinctive site to work with.
We picked our Cab Franc at Quady over two periods, an early picking (Evee Block) that mostly went to the Béton blend and the later pick, which was primarily used for our varietal Cabernet Franc, featured here. As has become our modus operandi for fermentations, we utilized the pied de cuve (native yeast build ups) technique to harness as much of the native yeast flora from the site to best express the sense of place each of these wines came from.
Our 2017 Granit was aged in three neutral and one new Burgundy barrels for the maximum textural benefit of oak aging with minimal overt “oakiness”. The 2017 Cabernet Franc “Granit” is as distinct as its vintage, and the terroir of this site is as distinct as any in the state. In 2017, we had “terroir from the sky” in the form of wildfires in southern Oregon, which gave truly unique characteristics to this wine. The nose offers pyrazines, roasted poblano peppers (certainly a feature of the 2017 vintage), star anise, and smells spicy like it would sichuan burn! The palate delivers muddled, savory raspberry flavors, essence of pomegranate, and dense mineral notes.
Alc - 12.4%, pH 3.80, 100 cases