The 2014 growing season in Sonoma County was long with mild temperatures resulting in very high quality fruit coming into the winery. The 2014 Cinq Cépages captures the highlights of this vintage. The opening bouquet offers layers of aromas including black raspberry, sweet currant, lifted perfumed violet and notes of baking chocolate. Secondary aromas of roasted coffee and nuanced notes of Earl Gray tea and spice add complexity.
The aromas lead to a plush palate with depth of flavors including raspberry compote and dark chocolate. The full-bodied wine is rich and refined with well-integrated, ripe tannins giving good structure. In signature Cinq Cépages form, this wine combines the strength of the diverse Sonoma County region to create an approachable, well-balanced and elegant wine.
2014 Cinq Cépages is a blend of classic Bordeaux grapes: Cabernet Sauvignon (77%), Cabernet Franc (9%), Merlot (8%), Malbec (3%),and Petit Verdot (3%). These varieties are used in each vintage, and once assembled, the blend spends almost an entire year in the bottle before release.
Cinq Cépages is the flagship wine of Chateau St. Jean. Each year, Winemaker Margo Van Staaveren selects fruit from the finest Bordeaux varietal vineyards to craft a wine that showcases the best of Sonoma County. The primary grape sources for the 2014 vintage are from some of the finest appellations throughout Sonoma County including the Moon Mountain District in Sonoma Valley which gives structure to the blend with black, dense mountain fruit. The Knights Valley fruit highlights boysenberry flavors and elegant tannins while the Dry Creek Valley fruit adds lush juiciness and rich texture. Finally, the Alexander Valley grapes in the wine show bright berry flavors with back notes of dried herbs.
The 2014 vintage proved ideal with excellent quality reminiscent of 2012. The winter was one of the driest in California on record, but substantial early spring rains set the vines on a strong start. Summer temperatures were milder, so with early bud break and veraison, harvest was unusually early.