LINEAGE is one of the finest, rarest Bordeaux blends ever produced in California. It is the perfect, exquisite expression of a truly great vineyard site and one winemaker’s history and passion in crafting Cabernet-based wines of the highest order. Lineage marries the experience of The Steven Kent Winery with the finely-tuned terroir of the Ghielmetti Estate Vineyard to produce the ultimate Bordeaux-style statement from the historic Livermore Valley winegrowing district.
The 2009 vintage is our third Lineage release. We chose only the six barrels we deemed of truly superior potential to be included in this offering, declassifying more than 98% of our Bordeaux production. 2009 was another in a string of cooler-than-average years, and this resulted in later harvests for some of the blocks on Ghielmetti Estate Vineyard. Cabernet Sauvignon — Clone 30 was the only block of this varietal that produced wine of great-enough character to be included. At the same time, it is one of the best Cabernets we have ever produced. For the first time Merlot plays a major role in Lineage. The fruit from Block 6 has a depth of flavor and structure that contribute immensely to the blend. After initial tastings were conducted post-malolactic in April 2010, the final assemblage was created in the first part of 2011.
On entry, this offering displays stunning richness with crème de cassis, black cherry, black plum dominating. It is because of the wine’s great opulence that its substantial tannic structure (aided by Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Petit Verdot) is not obvious until the mid-palate. There, Lineage becomes even more complex – fruit and wood tannins converging, aromatic notes of ground coffee, semi-sweet chocolate, and exotic wood notes blossoming. The power of this wine is shaped by a finish with fine-grained tannin and a lengthy expression of elegant fruit and acidity, all of which bode well for extended aging. Each variety was vinified separately then blended and re-barreled for 12 months before bottling. Drink from 2015 — 2026.
Harvest Dates: October 24 – November 6, 2009
Cépage: 63% Cabernet Sauvignon (Clone 30); 27% Merlot; 5% Malbec; 3% Petit Verdot; 2% Cabernet Franc — All harvested from the Ghielmetti Estate Vineyard in the Livermore Valley. Alcohol 14.8%.
Fermentation: After destemming and crushing, each varietal was fermented separately in 1.7 ton open-topped fermenters. Fermentation and extended maceration lasted from two to four weeks. Malo-lactic conversion was induced in barrel.
Aging: Five of the six barrels included in this blend were new French oak (Taransaud, Le Grand, and François Frerès among others). We believe that Cabernet Franc more completely shows its organoleptic complexity in second-use barrels so a 2007 Taransaud barrel was used for this grape. In January 2011, the final assemblage was made and returned to barrel until bottling in January 2012.