2015 Obsidian Ridge "The Chief"
The color is dense, deep and intense. Ripe plum, cherry cordials, and herbal sage aromas waft from the glass with a mineral dustiness. The wine is big and lush on the palate, intense and extracted. This Cabernet is loaded with spice flavors of cinnamon, vanilla extract and brown sugar sweetness. A big wine in a big bottle that will age well for decades.
Lake County legend tells of Chief Konocti, who forbid his daughter to marry her suitor. The Chief and the suitor battled to the death, providing the color of the Red Hills. The daughter’s tears filled Clear Lake, and the Chief’s body formed Mt. Konocti, the prominent volcano that dominates the view from Obsidian Ridge. We honor “The Chief.” We made just 1 barrel of this wine.
This harvest was especially memorable in the Red Hills at our Obsidian Ridge Vineyard. The "Valley Fire”, which scorched the earth across 76,000+ acres, actually began only a few miles south of our vineyard in the town of Cobb. Adding to the drama was the fact that the day of the fire coincided with our first day of harvest. We were able to get our first load safely down the mountain, but because of the extent of the blaze, we were not permitted to reenter for days. It was a nail-biting period, rampant with phone calls between the fire authorities, our vineyard managers and the winery to try and assess which way the wind was blowing. Days later, when we finally got a call from the county authorities that we could reenter escorted, we found that we were upwind of any and all smoke and fire. Our vineyards were unscathed. Cool temperatures and an unusual strong rainfall a week later helped the valiant firefighters gain the upper hand on the flames, allowing us to experience a very high quality wine harvest amidst the environmental and human toll that the fire had taken on the surrounding area.
Alex Beloz, Winemaker