The 2019 growing season in Northern California was what many would consider a near-perfect or “classic” vintage. The vines soaked up every inch of the extremely heavy rainfall we received in March and April. Robust cover crops flourished between the vineyard rows and enriched the soil with plenty of nutrients. Late rains in May, followed by summer heat, caused the canopies to push heavily in June and July. Experienced hands in the vineyard rallied to manage their vigorous growth. We saw only a few heat spikes throughout the warm summer months, giving us extended hang time on the vine. The harvest provided grapes with great color, balanced structure and brilliant acidity.
Not the least bit shy, this vintage of Playing with Fire expresses all the best attributes of the spectacular 2019 vintage. Effusive boysenberry and blackberry aromas are layered with hints of molasses, root beer and bitter chocolate. The dark meaty aromas are likely from the generous percentage of Malbec, while the Merlot brings afeminine, floral note. Smooth and creamy on entry, the core is lush and concentrated like a bite of a dark chocolate covered cherry. Full bodied yet complex, you might find a playful spiciness and a touch of perfectly brewed black tea in the mid-palate. Ripe summer fruit flavors evolve into chewy, youthful tannins that leave you longing for another sip. Your patience will be rewarded with a little time in the cellar, but this wine
is ready to play right now.