Cloud9 CabFranc 2012 starting to look promising

Cloud9 CabFranc 2012 starting to look promising

We haven’t written an update from Cardan for a while, so you might be thinking that everything was quiet there. Well it is quiet but there is still plenty happening! Here’s a quick pre Christmas update.

When we discussed the “Two big questions” a few weeks back, we were hesitant to talk about vintage 2012. The wines have successfully completed their malolactic fermentation and have stabilised nicely in their vats. We had thought that we would run them off into barrels before the New Year but as they are progressing so well in the vats, we will wait until January before we start the barrel maturation.

And yes – before you ask – I did write “wines” in the plural! It increasingly looks as if we may produce two wines in 2012! Of course Cloud9 our 100% varietal Cabernet Franc is there. The feedback from the team in Cardan is that the 2012 will be similar in quality and taste to our 2010. We love that as it gives good continuity for the Cloud9 brand. But better still, it shows that our 2010 wine was not “beginners’ luck” and that Pascale really understands her vineyard well and has produced great fruit in what was a very difficult year.

The first Merlot fruit in Hourcat Centre, prior to harvest 2012

2012 Merlot fruit in Hourcat Centre

So what is the second wine? We can’t really hide the secret that we harvested some Merlot this year from the small old vine block in Hourcat Centre. The quantity was in fact so small that it cold not be easily stored and protected in one of the new 500 litre vats and so we decided to blend it with the smaller vat of Cabernet Franc. So we have CabMerlot! This wine has kept us guessing almost since the first week in the winery but slowly and surely, we think it is going to make a great wine. And yes we will keep you guessing about a name and how, when it will be released until we are absolutely certain of its quality! More news will follow over the months “en barrique”.

In the vineyard, it is very quiet. Our loyal soldiers stand tall as the cold wet winter conditions descend. There has already been some frost to push the sap down into the roots and winter rain is always welcome to soak the soil with water again before the season starts. Pascale will start the pruning early into the New Year as the cycle all starts again.