The philosophy of blending is basic to the concept of Trilogy. We approach this wine like an artist with a palette of colors. The result is a complex masterpiece of flavors and aromas that have great persistence on the palate and are tempered with a sense of elegance and finesse.
A preliminary Trilogy blend was made after malo-lactic fermentation had concluded. The wine rested quietly in small (50% new) French oak barrels until just prior to bottling. 1998 was a vintage that required stringent winery practices so that we could extract as much as we could from the fruit. This year, for the first time, we added Malbec to the blend.
1998 was a challenge in every way. El Ninos grip on the weather gave us a cold, damp spring that resulted in lower yields. It also put us on a track for a later than normal harvest. The cool summer was interrupted by a short spurt of very intense heat that kept us on our toes. This was the "year of the grower" who had to be in the vineyard constantly, thinning and deleafing early to avoid any mildew and then later to eliminate any damaged fruit. The result: Excellent! Because of good farming practices a little luck and near perfect harvest conditions, we had a late harvest but an excellent one.