Teachworth Napa Valley 2006: Our winemaker/vineyard manager is Denis Malbec, a Frenchman from Paulliac and his wife May Britt. His grandfather, father and then Denis worked for Latour in succession. We felt they had the knowledge and reputation to make our dream of a stellar cab come true.
January 2006 saw flooding in Napa Valley and mud slides in California; it was wet and warm. Feb and March were wet and cold! March was the wettest on record: 25 days of rain! Total rainfall for our rainy season was 61 inches falling between 10-25-05 & 05-23-06.
Bud break came at the end of the first week of April, later than any previous year since our first vintage of 2000. The first half of 2006 was the hottest first half of a year in 100 plus years! The grapes looked great and veraison appeared the first week of August. The weather for the month was consistent with hot afternoons following morning fog. Mid September the grapes had small clusters with flavorful berries.
Harvest was in October: fourteen hour days touching, examining and sorting every berry meticulously. A lot of fruit was discarded. The grapes were cold soaked with dry ice in three open new French oak barrels followed by barrel fermentation. The vineyard was then raked with organic compost between the rows. Total Production: 50 cases