There is a small block of Blaufränkisch planted at Johan Vineyards and it has done well in its microclimate. The grapes ripen fully at lower sugar levels, so that this fully ripe and extroverted example comes in at a cool 11.9 percent alcohol! The bouquet is excellent, jumping from the glass in a mix of black cherries, cigar smoke, lovely soil tones, a touch of red plum, pepper and a topnote of fresh herbs. On the palate the wine is medium-full, complex and quite soil-driven in personality, with a nicely sappy core, modest tannins and excellent length and grip on the beautifully balanced finish. I can understand why other winegrowers in the Willamette Valley are excited about the potential of Blaufränkisch here! 2017-2030.
Lurid ruby-red. Mineral-laced cherry and red berry scents, along with notes of licorice, cracked pepper and succulent herb flourishes. Chewy and focused on entry and then fleshier in the midpalate, offering bitter cherry and red currant flavors and a sweetening floral pastille element. Closes supple, broad and subtly sweet; fine-grained tannins frame lingering cherry and spicecake notes. (JR)
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