Everything is behind schedule. The spring
dragged into summer without warming up much, and the rain kept
coming. By the 4th of July, the Cabernet Sauvignon fruit
was just setting; this, of course, means we can expect the latest
harvest ever after one of the wettest winters ever.
All the best,
With the extra time we are making some changes. It's almost hectic
First of all, the old equipment, i.e. all of our equipment, is
being reworked. For example, the crushpad will be new from floor
to roof. New cement, drainage, and ceiling are going in. But
the biggest shocker is this: our old crusher-stemmer is retiring
after decades of service. Many of you will know that our old
crusher-stemmer was something of an institution around here.
Built in the 1930's, it went by monikers like "Dinosaur"
and "The Beast". Regardless, we're making way for the
shining stainless steel of the new Zambelli. As a result, stem
removal should be cleaner, and the berry crushing itself will
be less Jurassic.
In addition, we are re-sealing the concrete tanks and painting
the press. And, we have more work in the vineyard as it has been
a tough mildew-control year and a tough weed-control year.
We also have our Fall Release to keep ourselves entertained.
We are now selling 1994 Pinot Noir, 1993
Cabernet Sauvignon, and the re-released 1985 Cabernet Sauvignon.
The 1994 Pinot Noir is certainly one of our best in a long time.
It offers a nose of deep red cherry, strawberry, licorice, and
tea leaves. The influence of French Oak is subtle. On the palate,
the red berries are supported by a healthy but relatively supple
platform of tannins.
The 1993 Cabernet Sauvignon is a
classic Mayacamas Cab: big and concentrated. When you grow all
of your fruit at this place, you get a mouthful. The attack is
telling: in the nose one finds black cherries, black plums, dates,
and figs. It is very complex. The palate confirms what your nose
suspected; that this is a large wine, with more black cherry,
blackberry, and other brooding dark fruits. The Mayacamas tannins
and acidity ensure that the wine will continue to evolve positively
for about two more decades.
Lastly, we offer the 1985 Cabernet Sauvignon. The nose is rich
and mature. Red and black cherries, licorice, vanilla, and a
wealth of prunes compose the nose. On the palate, the ripe red
fruit, vanilla, and prunes dominate, with a backbone of resolving
tannins providing support. it is very, very good.
In fact, it's so good that we're having a hard time staying
away from it. But this extra drinking is good for our heads,
as our recent studies with wine and buffalo herds show.
To illustrate: you're aware of the savage logic of the buffalo
herd. A herd will only move as fast as the slowest buffalo; when
the herd is hunted, the slowest and weakest ones are killed first.
This natural selection is good for the herd as a whole, because
the weakest members are regularly culled out of the group. The
remaining ensemble is healthier and generally the better for
It seems that the same principle applies to our brains. The human
brain can only operate as fast as the slowest brain cells
allow. And naturally, the alcohol attacks the slowest and weakest
brain cells first. Thus, regular consumption hones the cranium
into a sleeker, more efiicient machine. This phenomenon explains
why you always feel smarter after a few glasses of wine.