Austin Hope Graciano 2021
The Austin Hope Graciano possess a dark ruby color that is typical of the varietal. Fragrant aromas of dried violets, fresh mulberry and a touch of herbaceousness continues through the palate and blends with flavors of olallieberry, cooking spices and warm chocolate. Tannins are well integrated creating a full-bod and balanced wine.
Our Estate Graciano is grown in the Templeton Gap district, which is near perfect conditions for the varietal; Warm days, cool nights and afternoon spring and summer breezes with some maritime influence from the Pacific Ocean, just 22 miles away. Soils are clay-based but integrated with small, water worn limestone deposits that helps to keep the soil well-drained. Plant spacing is 5.5’ x 6’ which accommodates more plants per acre, thus allowing each plant to produce less fruit with concentrated color and flavors.
The 2021 growing season was very typical through early spring with warm days and cool nights. Early summer through harvest gave us some unexpected heatwaves but plenty of marine breezes and mild weather prevailed. The result was a slight delay of harvest while we waited for acidity, pH and brix to balance creating mature flavors.
Graciano was hand-picked from the Hope Family Vineyard in addition to sourcing a portion from premium Paso Robles vineyards. After harvest, the individual lots of Graciano, Petite Sirah, and Malbec were fermented in stainless-steel tanks for 10-14 days. Extended macerations and carefully managed pump overs enhanced the extraction of color and tannin. The lots were aged separately for 9 months in newer 65% French Oak as well as 35% neutral French and American Oak. The wine was racked only once during its cellar life where the lots were combined to make the final blend and barreled down to original barrels. The blend was then racked a final time before being filtered and bottled mid-July of 2022.