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Bottle Size: 750ml
The Applegate Valley AVA in southern Oregon has become a favorite for us due to its unique granitic bedrock and its microclimate that is warmer and drier than the Willamette Valley, but cooler and wetter than the greater Rogue Valley to the east. The Applegate has proved to us to be a perfect region for the Loire clones of Cabernet Franc we have come to love so much. Herb Quady is one of the best growers in the region, if not the state, who is doing all the right things for the terroir there, including organic farming techniques and very well thought out and judicious irrigation use. His own Quady North Vineyard and the Serra Vineyard, which he also farms, sit in the hills above the Applegate river. We anchor our Béton bistro style red blend with Cabernet Franc from both of these, as well as the Côt (AKA Loire Malbec) portion from the Serra Vineyard. The Gamay component (15% of the blend) comes from Methven Family Vineyard, planted in 2002 which located in the Willamette Valley, as well as a small amount of Biodynamically farmed Pinot Noir from Johan Vineyards, also in the Willamette Valley.
We love the Touraine rouge cuvée wines from the Loire that are typically served as bistro wines in Paris and used them as inspiration for our “Béton” blend. We attribute the success of our red blend, now in it’s seventh vintage, to the desire of so many to have an intriguing and food friendly, yet never overly heavy bistro-style red wine as a mainstay at the dinner table.
With the winemaking for the “Béton,” we independently fermented most of the components, including two carbonic fermentations (Methven Gamay and and one of the Cabernet Franc ferments in stainless) and three other fermentations with varying whole cluster components (Serra Cabernet Franc and Serra Côt, as well as the anchor Quady Eevee vineyard Cabernet Franc) to create a balance between the fruity carbonic wine with more nuanced and finessed traditional fermented wine.
For the all the lots, we utilized spontaneous fermentation or a pied de cuve buildup from the native flora in each vineyard. Each of the ferments were normal in length this year and lasted about 20-25 days on the skins, with the wines being pressed off ranging from mid to late October. Per the name of this of this Loire style red, all of the parts were blended post pressing and aged in concrete (AKA Béton), including our new 975 gallon concrete tank, affectionately named “Big Bertha.”
For those who recall last vintage’s Béton, which was influenced by wildfires in the Applegate Valley, 2018 is a return to Béton greatness! The aromatics scream Cabernet Franc with violet floral overtones, plums, and sauvage berries in the background. The pallet is juicy, clean, perfectly structured and balanced with Cab Franc-y notes of pepper, dark earth, and cassis. We love the elegance and focus on plum and dark berry fruits this vintage and are truly ecstatic for this vintage!Division Winemaking Company is a Portland, Oregon based winery founded in 2010 by Kate Norris and Thomas Monroe. Inspired by the wineries of Loire, Beaujolais, Burgundy and the Northern Rhone where they first learned winemaking and viticulture, the urban winery creates Oregon and Washington wines including Pinot Noir, Gamay, Chardonnay, Rose, Chenin, Riesling, Cabernet Franc, Cot, Syrah, Grenache, and Sauvignon Blanc. Determined to make approachable and balanced wines though minimal manipulation, the winemakers have a passion to work with well farmed terroir expressive vineyards, many of which are organic and/or Biodynamic®, celebrating the varietals the winemakers loves to drink.