2012 Black Russian Red
McGregor Saperavi: America's first success with Saperavi. Two separate parcels of estate grown Saperavi and Sereksiya Charni are blended together in this vintage of Black Russian Red. A total of 2.51 tons of fruit were harvested from the first parcel on September 27, 2012. These grapes had 23 brix natural sugar, 1.05 TA and 3.21 pH. They were crushed, inoculated with yeast and fermented for eight days at 68-80 degrees and went through complete malolactic fermentation. In the second parcel, 2.68 tons of grapes were harvested by hand on October 8, 2012.
These grapes had 24.4 brix natural sugar, 0.98 TA and 3.26 pH. They were then crushed, inoculated with a different yeast strain from that used with the first parcel and fermented for 10 days at 68-82 degrees. This also went through complete malolactic fermentation. The two wines were blended together and transferred into eight new American oak barrels and six neutral American oak barrels. The wine was aged for 30 months then transferred to stainless steel where it was egg white fined, cold stabilized and then filtered. It was bottled on July 22, 2015. The finished wine has 0.72 TA, 3.58 pH, 0.5% residual sugar and 13% alcohol. 227 cases were produced.
I cannot say enough good things about this vintage. It’s truly outstanding! The wine, as expected, is dark and gorgeous in the glass. Aromas of ripe blackberry, sweet coconut and black tea rise from the glass and are also present on the palate. There are also suggestions of elderberry, cranberry and black currant but the fruit is currently still hiding a bit in the background. The wine is soft, rich and palate filling and the smooth tannins create a very long lingering finish. This wine has a great future ahead of it, but is incredibly approachable right now, let the wine breathe for at least a few hours prior to enjoying. Easily enjoyable now through 2022.