While California’s Napa Valley might be the capital of cabernet, producing very bold and powerful wines, Sonoma county’s Alexander Valley has, over the years, produced slightly softer and more elegant cabernets. It may be the soil – river rock combined with alluvial deposits that drain from the sides of the valley; it may be the light fogs that periodically cover the valley. Whatever it is, the wines of Alexander Valley are unique, expressing different qualities.
Nine years ago, we purchased a small, four-acre vineyard that was politely described as “needing work.” We went to work, hiring a viticulturist, replacing the well and irrigation systems, planting a number of new vines. We added potassium and boron to the soil to support root growth. For the first few years, we sold the entire harvest to other wineries. In 2013 we were ready to make our own wine label. With the help of Jim Richard, a local winemaker, we experimented with multiple blends for several weeks. We finally settled on a classic blend of 75% cabernet (all from our own vineyard), and a blend of merlot, Petit Verdot, and Malbec to balance the wine.