Blacksmith Cellars
2002 Alexander Valley
Cabernet Sauvignon

Composition: 85.5% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot, 3% Syrah, 1.5% Petite Verdot
Harvest Date: September 2002; Sugar: 25.1 Brix; Total Acid: 0.58; pH: 3.81
Fermentation: 21-day small-batch fermentation, punched down four times daily
Aging: 70% French Oak, 30% American Oak; 80% new oak; 22 months in barrel
Bottling Date: July 2004; Release Date: March 2005
Production: 160 Cases (750 ml), 16 cases (375 ml)

Vineyard: The fruit for Blacksmith Cellars’ Cabernet Sauvignon comes from Todd Brothers Vineyard located in the hills northeast of Geyserville. This mountaintop vineyard sits in thin, rocky soil so the vines don’t grow too aggressively. This low-yield vineyard is trellised on bilateral wire with a drip system. A rare berry shatter occurred in spring 2002, knocking off flowers, which in turn reduced the number of berries per cluster and cut the normal crop yield in half to 2 tons per acre. This unique occurrence, unlikely to happen again for years, created a particularly intense and age-worthy Cabernet Sauvignon.

Cellar Practices and Winemaking: Fermented in 1-ton bins and gently punched down by hand to ensure high-quality tannins. The winemaker carefully chose six forest-specific barrels with particular toast combinations to acquire certain flavors and aromas and the highest quality structure and finish. Blending was done in the barrel to integrate flavors and aromas.