The Solar Fortún Estate:
- Solar Fortún is a family owned and operated winery that was officially established in 2010 and planted 3 years prior in 2007. Coming from a background in theoretical and natural physics, (both of Santiago's parents are professors of physics at the university in Ensenada), the plan for this estate was methodical and precise, with no consideration left unattended.
- Fully sustainable, (and idyllic to the point of being completely transportive) the only non-renewable resource they use in their operation is the fuel that runs their tractor. As the harvests, and almost all the work in the vineyards is done by hand, it doesn't get used much!
- All grapes are estate grown in an organically farmed vineyard site at 1,100 ft elevation in the northern most section of the valley, approximately 15 miles from the Pacific in a part of the valley called Francisco Zarco. The confining walls are so tight at this point that they create more of a canyon than a valley. This creates a unique micro-climate where the temperature differential between the mountainsides and the valley floor generates a nearly constant breeze eliminating the risk of cluster rot or powdery mildew. This cooler climate also plays a role in the high natural acidity of these wines and their very prevalent floral components.
Total production: 18.5 acres under vine, 10 wines, 3,000 cases
2019 Cabernet Sauvignon - Solar Fortún
Tasting Notes and Drinking Window:
The 2019 vintage started with a very cold and prolonged winter with a rainy season that delivered 18 inches up until June. This is the perfect pattern for the vines to go fully dormant, wake up at the same time, creating just one set and delivering high yields. The mild summer allowed for a much later harvest than usual with the cabernet Sauvignon not being harvested for an additional three weeks relative to previous vintages. The result is a wine made from fully developed grapes with great varietal expression excellent acidity and silky well-integrated tannins. Buzzing and ready to go upon release, this one will also age 10 years or more.
290 cases made
Drinking window: Now - 10 years
85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Petit Verdot
Santiago Lopez - Mexican
Valle de Guadalupe, ejido de Francisco Zarco - Estate vineyards in a tight valley with sandy soils of decomposed sandstone and some red clay.
Fermentation occurred over a period of 2 weeks in stainless steel tanks before being racked into American oak barrels only 30% of which were new and the rest 2nd and 3rd use. The wine aged in barrels for 12 months and was bottled unfiltered.
Sulfites: 30 ppm