2012 La Sophia Cabernet Sauvignon

Winemaker's Notes

Limit of three bottles per customer.

We celebrate the fact that we make wine in a region where vintage variations play an important role. Atypical growing seasons are a nightmare for commercial wineries interested in making consistent but boring wines. For us however it defines our interest in wine. We look forward to seeing what Mother Nature gives us to work with each year. It is the effects of each vintage on the finished wine that urges us to start verticals of our favorite wines then follow their evolution and discuss their merits at tastings with friends.

After an initial scare of unusually high record rainfall in late spring the remainder of the growing season was an absolute dream come true. Mid July till late fall gave us very hot days combined with typical cold desert nights. Growing degree days for the South Okanagan were above average and certainly much higher than 2010 and 2011. One of the hallmarks of this vintage was extremely uniformly ripe and pristine grapes with minimal need for sorting (quite the opposite of 2008, 2010 and 2013). The resulting wines are more fruit forward with round structure thanks to plenty of sunshine and heat units; the cool nights resulted in excellent, piercing aromatics and bright acidity in the wine.

La Sophia is akin to the great examples of Cabernet Sauvignon from the coastal areas of Tuscany: Maremma and Bolgheri. Our inspiration is certainly the legendary “Sassicaia”. Similarly La Sophia draws comparison to famed cabernets from Washington State’s Red Hills and Walla Walla rather than the plusher and fatter examples from Napa Valley.

2012 La Sophia presents a great nose of cassis, macerated cherries mingling with cigar box, forest floor, cedar, grilled capsicum and sweet spicy tobacco. On the palate there is great weight, firm but plush tannins with balanced natural acidity. A wine best kept in the cellar for many years to come.

Please note prices do not include applicable taxes or bottle deposit (PST 10% and GST 5%)

Pairings

The tannins are firmer and the acidity is higher than our Merlots. As a result the wine benefits from pairing with fattier cuts of meat and dishes that are higher in acidity. Herb crusted rack of lamb is a winning pairing

Vineyards:

91 pts

Twenty-six year old vines from the southern Okanagan are presented unfined and unfiltered in La Sophia. Now with time in the bottle (and 12 hours of decanting), this 100 percent cabernet sauvignon is beginning to reveal its depth and expressiveness. Alluring leather, cassis, cigar and sweet tobacco aromas. The structured, full body shows some give around the corners now, revealing layers of dried black cherry, ripe cassis, worn leather, dark earth, dark florals and fine peppery spice, all supported by a vein of acidity. Tannins are firm and sinewy, trailing into sappy branch, and drawing the dense, sunned fruit through to a lengthy finish. Still a youthful wine, and with glimpses of what lies ahead 5+ years, when I plan on revisiting it. Pour now with rich pork belly or lamb.

Treve Ring  |  Wine Align  |  Tasted: July 2015

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