Hafner Vineyard

2014 Next Red

Vineyard

In 1997, we planted three acres of Malbec and Petit Verdot to blend with our Cabernet Sauvignon wine. Having enjoyed Malbec wines from the Cahors region of France, we decided to create a Malbec based wine and named it Next Red. Thanks to the success of this wine, we now have seven acres of Malbec. This is our eleventh vintage.

We had a cold, dry Winter (with the rainfall total half of normal) and then a warm Spring which led to an early budbreak. We anticipated an early harvest, but moderate Summer temperatures ripened the grapes slowly. Harvest began on September 23.

Cellar

This red wine was produced by fermenting the juice with its skins to extract the color and flavor. CO2 gas (a by-product of fermentation) bubbled up through the skins causing them to float to the top and form the “cap”. To ensure thorough extraction, we pumped juice from the bottom of the tank and sprinkled it over the cap several times a day throughout fermentation.  

Following the Bordeaux tradition of extended maceration, the wine remained on the skins for another two weeks to soften its young tannins. Next the wine was moved into our caves for barrel aging. During its first Winter, the wine underwent malolactic fermentation to lower its acidity and add richness. After many tastings in the Spring of 2016, we blended 12% Cabernet Sauvignon and 4% Petit Verdot with 84% Malbec. We continued to barrel-age the wine until it was bottled in August 2016.

Drinkability

Young, fresh and fruit-forward, the 2014 Next Red opens with notes of cola spice, sweet mint and black cherries. The liveliness of the Malbec is complemented by the elegant complexity of the Cabernet and the Petit Verdot. Soft, round and supple on the palate, it has notes of juniper berries, violets, dark chocolate and vanilla toastiness that add richness and complexity. Like its predecessors, the 2014 has the balance and structure to age well for at least an additional fifteen years beyond its vintage year.

Order your 2014 Next Red here. 

2014 Next Red

At Harvest:

23.2° Brix sugar
0.61 g/100 mls acidity
3.50 pH

At Bottling:

14.0% alcohol
0.60 g/100 mls acidity
3.71 pH