The Duke usually has more Zin and Cab than anything else. Last year’s had some Grenache (didn’t ripen fully enough to bottle by itself), Malbec, Cab Franc, Petit Verdot and I’m leaving out something else.
The Victory is the apex of our winemaking effort. The largest component of the Victory is the Handal-Denier Cabernet sauvignon, so that is probably the closest any of these three come. Blending with bits of other wines for the Victory allows us to fine tune texture and body while adding more aromatic complexity. The Karren is more powerful and concentrated than the Victory, but also simpler. The Mohrhardt Ridge (also a component of the Victory) is not as big or concentrated, but does have intriguing aromatic complexity.
Again with the multiple questions. In order:
You have distilled the differences quite well.
No residual sugar in any; just “sweetness” from alcohol, fruit flavor (tricks the brain into perceiving sweetness) and oak.
The Mohrhardt Ridge, with it’s very long final ripening phase (due to cool Sonoma Coast weather) typically has very soft tannins. We need to extract all that tannin and often augment it as well. In 2006 we left the wine on the skins for 22 days, used some American oak for added tannic struture, used all the press wine and blended in some Cabernet Franc. All of these practices added tannin and body; without them the wine was lighter, thinner and softer.
As far as yields, Karren is a tiny vineyard, and more than half the Handal-Denier Cabernet went into the Victory blend.
I’m pretty sure my husband will disown me if I buy any more wine without lowering our current overstock first. Never tried a Wellington wine, but hear lots of good things about them. Then again, I hear lots of good things about other wines that I just don’t like so much… Maybe I’ll have to settle for a visit to the winery when we make our long delayed tour of california wine country!
1 to winery (SonomaBouliste): I have thoroughly enjoyed several of your woot offerings in the past, and will probably get 1 or 2 of the current offering. I will be in Sonoma/Napa May 8 - 10 and would love to stop by the winery. I have read on here how you guys welcome wine.wooters and give special tours. How would I line this up, and what sort of tour fees are there? (I can’t find any tour info on your web site).
2 to wine.woot: as stated above, I will be out of town May 4 - 12, so could not accept deliveries of wine orders during that time. When do you expect to ship this offering?
Great, I’ll talk with the wife and let you know the day before we will be around. In for 2 by the way, hope I can get the shipping date lined up. I don’t want it riding around a FedEx truck for a week.