Until now, we hadn’t really produced sufficient vintages to justify carrying out a proper “vertical” tasting of our Bordeaux wines – that is a tasting from one year to another of the same wine, brand or vineyard. As we come of age – 2015 was our sixth vintage – one of those wonderful pleasures of being a WineCo owner was about to happen.
We organised a team meal and just to keep ourselves honest, we called in an independent St. Emilion organic producer and wine trader, Gérard Dupuy to challenge us and help us through the tasting. The results were very revealing! It was an exciting evening. And it also showed us just how far we have come over those first six vintages.
First up was our debutant wine – the 2010 full varietal CabernetFranc selling in Australia under the name of Cloud9 and in the USA as B1ockOne. We had long held the view that, because it was our first vintage, the wine would not last nor improve greatly in bottle. Wow, did we get that one badly wrong! Every bottle that I taste appears to continually get a fraction better. It has not yet peaked. It still shows great fruit, a cherry nose, nice body, complexity and as always with Paradise Rescued Cabernet Franc the beautiful long slightly spicy finish in the mouth. There were more good wines to come, but what I did notice was how often Gérard went back to the 2010 as his point of reference and favourite.
The 2012 is still stored away in Bordeaux and we hope to label and capsule it soon and start to release it commercially. But sadly we couldn’t get to taste it. Next up on the tasting list was the 2013. Given the immense challenges of this vintage, the only real winning varietal was Cabernet Franc and it was a wonderful testament to the persistence of our team to have even made any wine at all! The world of Bordeaux wine may have written this vintage off already. Our advice is: watch Bordeaux wines containing CabFranc with much interest!
And then came the 2014. This was the first time that I tasted this wine since bottling in early December. For a young wine, it was exciting. With excellent classic Cabernet Franc bright ruby colour, full of cherry fruit flavour with plenty of heart and flavour. A great example of a Bordeaux wine at its best and I believe a real credit to the cause of Cabernet Franc in one of the world’s benchmark wine regions. I am sure we will talk a lot more about Paradise Rescued 2014 Cabernet Franc in the future. The progress from 2010 to this wine is an incredible testament to a “hands on” dedicated team and an organic viticultural approach.
Also in our glasses was our 2012 “Drop Red Gorgeous” Merlot Cab Franc blend and 2014 MCF – name still pending!! I have long talked about the potential for our Hourcat Centre vineyard and Merlot blends. It is still a little early to really talk about this. But that moment is getting closer and from the sneaky previews I also had in the winery last week, I think 2015 will be its coming of age too! Keep you posted!
But quite simply expressed – incredible Bordeaux wine! Nice job team. Congratulations.