Dancing Bear Ranch is an extraordinary blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc from the Dancing Bear Ranch Estate Vineyard on Howell Mountain. Divided into 24 separate blocks based on varietal type, sun exposure, soil profile, and clonal selection, the vineyard is planted in dry, rocky, volcanic soils between 1,400 and 1,900 feet of elevation and enjoys a near 360-degree exposure, offering a diverse range of growing conditions. The well-drained soils and position high above the fog line routinely stresses the vines, yielding small crops of intensely flavorful grapes. Fermentation and maceration are carefully managed to monitor tannin levels and limit over-extraction of the small berries with intense mountain character. Free-run component wines are aged in French oak barrels and subsequently blended, for a total of 22 months in 62% new French oak prior to bottling.
Bright, high-toned aromas of ripe boysenberry, blackberry and dark cherry fruit are coupled with fascinating floral and forest-floor spice scents in the captivating nose of this complex mountain Cabernet. Dense and deeply concentrated on the palate, the wine offers intense black fruit flavors that segue into an extremely long, lush, dark-fruit finish laced with invigorating spice and mineral tones. Beautifully structured by big, but supple tannins and fresh acidity, Dancing Bear, despite its intensity, displays a charming elegance. Delicious upon release but will more than reward another decade of aging.