2000 Dyer Cabernet Sauvignon
Tasting Notes on Release (3/03) “Deep, red-purple color. Complex aromas with hints of anise, violets & blueberries-more forest floor than black fruit. Finely structured. Concentrated fruit with a touch of herb on the palate.” We recommend decanting Dyer Cabernet Sauvignon when young. The 2000 will easily age 10+ years.
Vintage Notes: 2000, the first growing season of the new century, began with some startlingly high Spring temperatures and almost no rain or frost after budbreak. The weather changed in June and the critical ripening period after berry set was actually quite cool. There was a brief heat spike in September followed by a smattering of rain, but on Diamond Mountain our fruit was far from the vulnerable late stage of development and rode through it with ease. Dyer Vineyard has a northeastern exposure, which makes it one of the latest ripening vineyards in the neighborhood. While some winemakers are harvesting at extremely high sugar levels to maximize flavors, we find slow, even ripening in the milder and shorter days of October produces intense character without the extremes of sugar content that lead to very high alcohol levels. While there is more risk from early rains with late season vineyards, the low yields endemic to the volcanic rock and gravel in our site help mitigate this risk—in 2000 the vineyard averaged a scant 1.23 tons/acre.
In the 2000, the blend of 78% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12% Cabernet Franc, and 5% each Merlot and Petit Verdot was crushed to the fermenter on Oct 27, our latest harvest to date. After 15 days of maceration (a little shorter than normal, but appropriate to the season), we drained and pressed the new wine directly to a combination of French and Russian oak barrels where the malolactic fermentation took place. 21 months in barrels and several rackings completed the program and the wine was bottled in August of 2002.