What a speciality I’ve picked for today! A concentrated, dark coloured expression of Cabernet Sauvignon produced in the sunny region of Slovene Istria. Behind this black creation – my dear friend Tilen Praprotnik over at SteraS.
Such an expression of this variety can only be obtained from fully ripe and concentrated berries, and such is the case here. It’s falling under the line of extreme wines, which proudly wears the black label. Grapes were entirely hand-picked at the vineyard named Kocina.
Kocina is where the SteraS story started. It was 1976 Tilen’s father planted the first vines of Refosco here. All this until 2002, when they began adding other varieties, including the Cabernet Sauvignon. The name Kocina is a derivation from the Latin word Calcium. The old inhabitants of Isola used to refer to these slopes as Kalcine, which locals then adopted as Kocine.
Kocine is a set of different vineyards, positioned between 125 and 225 meters above sea level with southeast to southwest aspect. The soil is varied, from calcium-rich with high pH levels to more fertile ones, rich with clay. And the vines of Cabernet Sauvignon are planted in a rocky position, planted vertically, which helps with the ripening of grapes and adds concentration and body to the wine.
Grapes were harvested at the beginning of October, with sugars reaching as much as 27 ° Brix. After destemming and crushing, grape mash macerated for seven days. It was then gently pressed and racked to mature in barrique barrels with lees. After 24 months, it was decanted into a stainless vat to clarify to be then bottled without filtration. Only 1.000 bottles were filled with this wine in January 2018.
It has a deep ruby red colour, with almost an oily texture.
Its intense bouquet seduces us with dried blueberries, cranberries, creme de cassis, violet, black pepper, anise, vanilla, cinnamon, dried tobacco, rosemary, mint and chocolate.
It embraces our mouth pleasantly, warming it up as it built 16 % vol. alc., and leaving a sweety touch, even though it’s dry. At the same time, it refreshes us, leaving velvety tannins caressing us.
The body is vigorous, accentuated by luscious elegance with a long and lasting taste. A real charmer!
This expressive Cabernet Sauvignon provides intensity, body and warmth, and it will delight with its character. A wine you surely won’t find in every vintage, and 2016 was just about the right one. A bottle will cost you 32 Eur, and you can order it straight at the SteraS website. You can easily keep it stored in your cellar with such an expressive character for the next seven years.