The wine matured for 20 months in French oak (60% new) and offers aromas of dark fruits, warm spices and cocoa powder. The palate echoes the nose with added notes of tea leaves, minerals, balanced tannins and acidity.
The 2009 vintage presented us with relatively temperate growing conditions: a short frost season in the Spring followed by much needed showers in the May led into a mild summer with a few heat spikes in August and September. Though California faced its third consecutive drought year and water supplies across the county dwindled in the late summer, the Young Inglewood vines were not faced with overly stressful conditions. The harvest season was punctuated by a vintage-ending rain on October 13. On the St Helena Benchland, set was beautiful: good-sized clusters of Cabernet Sauvignon with small-tomedium sized berries. Merlot experienced some shatter, but the result was a positive one: ideal crop loadand loose clusters. Our Cabernet Franc put forth its typically wild clusters, which, with a little crop thinning, were ripe for….ripening. We gave the vines a few deep irrigations late in the summer to replenish the water supply enough to tide the vines over through the heat spells. Being an early-ripening site and implementing cultural practices geared toward an early harvest, allowedus to harvest everything before the huge rain. Our last Cabernet Sauvignon block came in along with our Cabernet Franc on October 12. Night picking enabled a healthy cold soak. Total skin contact ranged from 14-25 days.