Hand harvested, hand sorted blend of 70% Cabernet Franc and 30% Syrah. Free run juice pumped back over skins and cold soaked overnight. Whole bunch gentle press. Fermented by wild yeasts in
neutral oak barrel undergoing partial malolactic fermentation. Blend aged gracefully on fine lees in barrel, then spent an additional 6 months in stainless steel before bottling with minimal sulphur dosage.
These grapes were the last pick of County Pinot Noir from the 2016 harvest. Norman Hardie decided to let the juice macerate for 48 hours on the skins prior to a gentle basket press, mitigating any green tannins. Fermented with natural yeasts in horizontal tanks; the wine was additionally aged in wide based steel tanks on fine lees for 18 months prior to bottling. It has been given an additional 12 months of bottle ageing prior to release. Each year we choose a cuvee where we push the viticulture and winemaking boundaries. Pushing limits is not always successful; our 1st Coteaux Hillier experiment has been a resounding success. Only 50 cases produced.
2016 was an exceptionally hot and dry year in the Niagara Peninsula, resulting in early ripening. Grapes were picked earlier than usual, as early as late September (early by Ontario Cab Franc standards!). Fruit was hand-picked and a portion was carefully destemmed into small one-ton fermenters, with about one third fermented whole cluster. Fermented with indigenous yeasts. 18-20 days on the skin in total: 6-8 day cold soak with 2 pump overs a day, followed by 7 day fermentation with maximum of 2 punch downs a day, remaining days gentle turning of cap once a day. The wine was pressed in small batches in a traditional basket press before being put to French oak barriques for 10 months. The new oak component being 30%, the rest being 2nd, 3rd and 4th fill. Natural malolactic fermentation, bottled unfined and unfiltered, with minimal sulphur dose before bottling.
2015 was a challenging year in Prince Edward County. After an unusually warm spring, and promising start to the season, we experienced a crippling frost at the end of May. Sadly, about 85% of our production was lost in a single night. Despite this cold event, the rest of the season saw warm, dry weather and the buds that survived produced beautiful, clean fruit. This Cab Franc was 100% destemmed into small fermentation totes and fermented using natural yeasts. Post ferment pressing in our basket press and put into 225L barriques for 10 months ageing. 30% new oak, 70% older fill.
Fruit was hand-picked and carefully destemmed into small one-ton fermenters. Fermentation by indigenous yeast and pressed in small batches in an old basket press. Aged in French oak barriques for 10 months. Bottled unfined and unfiltered with no sulphur addition.
Fruit was hand-picked and carefully destemmed into small one-ton fermenters. Fermentation by indigenous yeast and pressed in small batches in an old basket press. Aged in French oak barriques for 10 months. Bottled unfined and unfiltered with a very low sulphur addition right before bottling.
This wine was bottled unfined, unfiltered and with absolutely no sulphur post fermentation. Wonderfully low 11.9% alcohol belies richness and vibrancy of this wine. The desirable cooler vintage has allowed us to craft a wine that has fresh acidity, lovely vibrancy and dark fruit; reminiscent of delicious cab franc from Chinon in the Loire Valley, France. Truly a wine that expresses both the soil and climate in the glass.
Only bottled in magnum*
Grown in a cooler year, this single vineyard Cab Franc displays the fresh acidity and bright fruit for which the County’s limestone soils are renowned. Hand-picked and carefully destemmed, this Cab Franc was fermented in small 1-ton batches using only indigenous yeast. Pressed in an old basket press and put into French oak for 10 months. This wine completed malolactic fermentation in the spring of 2014 and put to bottle with a very low sulphur addition right before bottling.
100% Prince Edward County Pinot Noir. Destemmed into bins with 6 hours of skin maceration. Pressed into stainless steel. Fermented cold in stainless steel and transferred to older 500 l barrels for 3 months. No malolactic fermentation to preserve freshness and acidity.
The grapes were harvested in mid-October, 2 weeks earlier than normal due to an early spring and wonderfully dry and warm fall. Hand picked at a welcoming 22 brix and a stable ph of 3.25. As the stems were beautifully ripe and brown, 35% were used in whole cluster fermentations. All ferments were 100% indigenous yeast, which explains the low alcohol (10.8%). Fermented on the skins for 21 days. While Cabernet Franc is often seen as a leafy and green wine, phenolic ripeness was achieved in the vineyard, which allowed us to make a rich and velvety wine.
Our soils most closely resemble those of the Loire Valley and Burgundy. It is natural that we grow and ferment our Cabernet Franc in a similar style to the great Chinon and Bourgueils. More so than with other varieties, we restrict the yields greatly in the vineyard so as to get full phenolic ripeness with no bell pepper greenness. Our Cabernet Franc is a County wine made from fruit grown next door to our estate vineyard. Harvested towards the end of October and wild yeast fermentation.
Deep ruby colour; on the nose, cedar and currants; dry, Chinon style with a sour cherry flavour and pliant tannins. Medium-bodied, firmly structured, unlike any Ontario Cabernet Franc I have tasted (no green vegetal notes here).