90 Points, Wine Enthusiast. "This is not necessarily a classic Grenache, but there is no denying its bold but sophisticated personality. Pomegranate and blackberry aromas are tinged with earthiness, and the flavors are rich in fruit as well. The texture is lush and the body is very full. Think of it as very ripe and delicious, while sleek and smooth in spite of high alcohol."
From Cline Cellars:
VINEYARDS Big Break Vineyard was named after a levee that collapsed over 80 years ago, flooding the local farmland. The combination of the extremely sandy, well-drained soils, dry-farmed century old, head-trained vines and the unique band of cooling air from the San Joaquin and Sacramento Rivers flavor Oakley's best vineyard sites. In fact, this block of land is situated between the San Joaquin River and a Eucalyptus grove. Both of these elements contribute to the wine, enhancing its taste by adding flavors such as, a minty characteristic. The combination of the aforementioned creates a synergy of elements that are ideal for both ripening, as well as, expressing the full character of the Grenache grapes.
FERMENTATION & AGING Grapes from the Big Break Vineyard were harvested at high natural sugar levels and treated gently in the cellar to emphasize the explosive fruit characteristic of the block. The fruit was almost entirely de-stemmed and lightly crushed, with a large proportion of whole berries remaining in the must. Fermentation occurred at moderate temperatures in stainless steel tanks, using a selection of cultured yeasts. After 10 days of gentle "pump-overs" and near dryness, we drained and pressed the wine from its skins. Big Break Grenache was minimally handled and aged for 12 months in new, medium-dark toasted French oak before bottling — approximately 35% new.
WINEMAKER’S NOTES This is our first release of the Big Break Grenache. In past vintages it has been blended into other high quality Cline wines but the vineyard produces such a high quality Grenache that we wanted to show it off on its own.