Figure: The distinctive pattern that results from various grain orientation and by annual growth rings, rays, knots or deviations from natural grain.
This is our third release from the R.M. Kennedy Vineyard and we are incredibly excited to have had a great harvest from this site in 2016! The 2016 Figure, black and dark purple in color, boasts aromas of Christmas spice, with seductive shavings of dark chocolate enhancing the lush dark red fruits. The wine is so super fresh and vibrant that we can’t help pulling the cork, but this wine will clearly benefit from at least a year or two, and even longer, of laying down. The 2016 Figure is a blend of clones 6, 30, 337, and 7. The wine was raised in 75% new French oak from Darnajou, Taransaud, Remond and Baron.
2016 was an extremely welcome and giving vintage on multiple fronts. The growing season was very controlled with the precipitation at the right times. Unlike previous years, there were very few drastic heat events, to cause stress to both the vines and winemakers. Notably, there were only two days over 100 degrees, whereas in 2015 there were more than 20 days of 100 degree weather. Throughout the 2016 growing season, the vineyard management team continued to improve the health of the vineyard with focused fertigations and precise irrigations in weak pockets. An usually cool August pushed our estimated harvest date further back into a more normal schedule. The greatest benefit of prolonged hang time on the vine is that the fruit develops more complex anthocyanin compounds, leading to more intense and nuanced flavors. Another advantage of the favorable climate during the growing season was the increase of the number and size of clusters compared to 2015. We are excited that there will be more of The Figure to go around!
The Notes (From Winemaker Thomas Rivers Brown)
As always, we feel that focusing on the vineyard is essential to have great fruit to work with and in turn producing quality wines. In addition to having mature, well farmed vineyards for both of our Hobel bottlings, we had a favorable growing season with none of the stress of the previous vintages. Beautiful and bountiful fruit came in and vinifications progressed smoothly. The resulting wines are continuing to evolve now that they are bottled and it’s evident that there are no missing components. The 2016s could possibly be the best set of wines yet from Hobel.