> Am planning on this next season's crush and
> winemaking, and am seriously considering making
> a 'Bordeaux style' blend. Have got access to
> excellent Merlot and Cabernet Franc grapes -
> still working on finding access to high quality
> Cabernet Sauvignon. Interested in any advice
> from others with experience trying to make
> similar. Some areas of interest:
If you have Merlot and Cabernet Franc, you really
don't need Cab Sauvignon. In one part of
Bordeaux the wine is made from just those two
grapes with Merlot being the base. In another
part of Bordeaux, Cab. Sauv. is the base. From
my experience, it will take longer for a Cab.
Sauv. to age out but you will have more tannins
and the wine will probably keep longer. My
favorite blend for the past few years has been
just Cabernet Franc and Merlot but now I have
some Cabernet Sauvignon coming on in my vineyard
so I will be experimenting.
> - Harvest numbers - anything out of the
> ordinary? Should I be targeting certain sugar
> and/or acid numbers? - Blending - when do you
> consider best? 'Field' blended? Right after
> primary? After all fermentation has stopped
> (secondary and MLF)? - Do you use a Pearson's
> square or similar and try to achieve any
> particular balances? TIA for any and all advice.
Until you are sure of your grapes and taste, I
recommend making the wines separately and then
blending. Where I live, the Merlot matures a
couple weeks before the Cabernet Franc so field
blending is not practical.