2019 Young Wine Red
Grape Variety: 90% Chambourcin, 10% Vidal Blanc
Winemaker Note: While the goal of this project is wine that is joyous/casual/chill, the minimalist approach is actually one of the more challenging ways to make clean and delicious wines. Because of that, we source the grapes from the Shenandoah Valley, where cooler temps give us higher acidity that protects the grapes through fermentation and the wine during aging, especially since Chambourcin wine is generally low in tannins. We co-fermented Vidal blanc to bring some depth to the aromatic and flavor profiles, and to further embrace the chillable, drinkable nature of the wine. This was not fined or filtered, and other than a small dose of sulfur dioxide at bottling, nothing was added but the grapes.
Wine Description: Chambourcin is a grape that, if you try to make it taste like vinifera, will end up with a similar result as jogging with a cat on a leash. You can do it, but it’s going to be weird, some folks may disapprove, and it will get it’s revenge while you sleep (the cat will, at least). Chambourcin’s spirit animal is not a cat on a leash, but rather some theoretical “always puppy”: soft, playful, endlessly charming, and it just won’t leave that cat alone. It is a red wine that carries a tannin load closer to that of most white wines, and like whites, is freshest and juiciest when there is plenty of acidity. For that reason it is perfect with a chill, and the soft tannins and bright fruit are reminiscent of the grape Gamay, when it is made in a way to highlight its juicy fruit, and that’s why in the early days of this wine Early Mountain veteran, Patt Eagan, coined the term “Chambojolais”. We should put that on a T-shirt.