A Nouveau is born! Nouveau is the name given to the first wine of the vintage. The style originated out of Beaujolais, just south of Burgundy where they make wines from Gamay Noir using the technique carbonic maceration. In carbonic maceration, open top tanks that have been inertized with carbon dioxide are filled with whole cluster grapes and then sealed for a number of days. The way the early natural winemaker Jules Chauvet employed the technique in the mid-20th century was to drain the juice that seeped out of the clusters from the tanks daily. He did this because that juice that would be in contact with the stems and skins thus extracting too much tannin and color; making a bigger wine than he intended. This is essentially how we made this wine. The juice we drained down daily was fermented separately and then blended with carbonic lots of Charbono, Zinfandel, Carignan and Petite Sirah. The Wine
The wine has a nose full of blue and red fruit. There are gobs of boysenberry and plum. On the palate it is super juicy with boysenberry jam, pomegranate, and blueberry. It has balanced acidity and there is an appealing mouth coating tannin that keeps it fresh on the palate.
All of the grapes used for this blend are from the Gary Venturi Vineyard which is farmed organically. It is situated in Calpella, just north of Ukiah on an east facing bench. We have been working with this vineyard since the beginning and are very happy to have taken over the whole property, converting it to organic practices.
To make this wine we employed Jules Chauvet’s “true carbonic” method to avoid picking up smoke that may be present on the skins of the grapes. It turned out to be a great method to make a tasty wine from the vintage and a super light style carbonic wine. A lot of carbonic wines are impacted by the must that comes in contact with stems, but this wine has no greenness or stemmyness