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2016 The Don

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2016 The Don
2016 The Don

Price: $24
Founder's & Collector's Clubs: $18
Case Club: $19.20
Connoisseur's Club: $20.40

90pts - Wine Spectator

81% Cabernet Sauvignon, 14% Syrah, 3% Cab Franc, 2% Merlot

Don Isidro, pronouced ee-SEE-droh, is named for our vineyard manager, Isidro Mondragon, and has been in production since 2007 as a one-of-a-kind Gård favorite.

 
Tasting notes
Ripe muddled red berries with black tea and spice and a whiff of tapenade and steeped plums. Swirling brings heavy black fruits like black currants, blackberry, plum puree and cassis. Herbs and spice weave through the round and polished palate with silky tannins and a juicy finish. A perfect every day wine. - Aryn Morell
Production notes

Sources from Lawrence's Scarline Vineyard, Solaksen Vineyard, Laura Lee Vineyard and Corfu Crossing Vineyard.  Fermented in a combination of concrete and stainless streel and aged in 225L barrels until blending in the early summer.  After blending half of the volume goes back to 225L barrels and the other half went into a 70HL round for volume storage.  Barrel notes are calmed down and primary fruit is incresed on the portion in the large cooperage.  A blend was then made after an additional year in barrel before being blended and then bottled.  

Vintage2016
Varietal Composition81% Cabernet Sauvignon, 14% Syrah, 3% Cab Franc, 2% Merlot
AppellationRoyal Slope
VineyardLawrence Vineyards
Acid5.4 g/L
PH3.74
Alcohol14.70%
Volume750 ml
Cases Produced1200

90pts, Wine Spectator

Precise and well-built, with medium-bodied cherry, black tea and dusty herb flavors that build toward refined tannins. Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Merlot and Cabernet Franc. Drink now through 2027. 1,400 cases made. — TF

89 pts, Vinous

Bright ruby-red. Aromas of redcurrant, raspberry, red licorice, tobacco leaf and more peppery pyrazines, plus a touch of Syrah reduction. Juicy but much less generous than the varietal Merlot and Cabernet Franc bottlings, showing firm acidity and hints of baking spices and herbs to its slightly clenched black- and redcurrant and licorice flavors. Can't match the Merlot or Cabernet Franc for texture or depth but finishes with lingering violet perfume and the subtle sweetness to counter its greenness. Half of this blend was aged in a 70-hectoliter round. (this is the first time this bottling has been Cab-heavy)

Gård Vintners is 100% estate grown sustainably at Lawrence Vineyards in the Royal Slope AVA. Lawrence Vineyards features seven distinct vineyard sites with elevations ranging 930 feet to 1,675 feet. The combination of elevation and south-facing slope provides a great framework for grape production, while the diversity of the seven locations delivers a high level of complexity to Gård wines. Lawrence Vineyards is certified sustainable by Vinewise.org.

Winemaker Aryn Morell, a Washington native, honed his skills in Napa Valley working with some of the country’s most notable producers, including Silver Oak, Joseph Phelps, Quintessa, Husic, Chimney Rock, Chappellet, Stags Leap and countless others in winemaking and the chemical engineering of wine as part of a consulting company for which he worked.

Aryn joined the Gard team as head winemaker in 2011, and spends considerable time in the winery’s estate vineyard with Josh Lawrence, Gard founder and viticulturist.  With an uncompromising attention to detail, Aryn carefully crafts Gard wines with an eye toward the unique expression of terroir of the estate vineyard, and earns frequent accolades and high acclaim for his wines.

In 2014, Aryn and Gard founders Josh and Lisa Lawrence launched a winemaking facility in Walla Walla, M&L Production, where all the Gård wines are produced, bottled and aged. Aryn also makes wine for Matthews Estate, Tenor, Alleromb and Mullan Road, a Washington project for Cakebread Cellars of California.

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