Monday, February 6, 2017

Message In A Bottle

Randall Grahm says the 2014 Old Telegram "is arguably the most interesting Old Telegram" he has made in years. He says he used a "very clever trick" he borrowed from the winemakers of Veneto - indoor air-drying the 100% Mourvèdre grapes for about four days, before foot-stomping them.

Grahm says even that length of time "results in a certain degree of concentration of flavor, sugar, and most significantly, a transformation of the stems of the clusters from green to brown, with the disappearance of green, stemmy flavors."

Old Telegram sells for $45 and 277 cases were produced. Alcohol is 13.9% abv. The grapes - Grahm likes to call the Mourvedre fruit Mataro -  hail from Contra Costa County's Del Barba Vineyard, 56 acres of vines at an average age of 73 years.

The extremely dark wine smells of black pepper, burnt cherries, licorice, meat and smoke. It's a beautiful nose. Savory squared. Flavors of dark fruit power over the earth and coffee and mint.

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