Cinsaut is Back April 12, 2016 10:34

Cinsaut is no longer sold out.  Here is a story about this wine.

Cinsaut has been in California for centuries known by a synonym Black Malvoisie. It was blended but probably never used as a stand alone varietal. This is not unique to Cinsaut, because varietal wines were uncommon before the 1970’s.  Most varieties were blended.

My grapes grow on 60 year old head pruned vines (no trellis) in a 2 acre Dry Creek Valley vineyard. Without irrigation the vigorous tendency of the vine is natural subdued. Clusters have juicy, distinctively oval berries that are dusty purple color. These gnarly old vines represent classic California grape growing at its best.

Total Cinsaut plantings in Sonoma County is 7 acres compared to 11,490 acres of Cabernet Sauvignon.

  Lovely Cinsaut cluster.

The wine is pleasing. I say "wonderful". It approaches you with lush fruit aromas and a sip brings on complexity of more red fruit flavors. Soft restrained tannins lead to a long soft finish with a little nutmeg spice. Its character allows you to pair the wine with a wide range of foods, from vegetarian to fish to steak.

Pair with: roast turkey, summer fruit salad, cambozola cheese, pasta primavera, BBQ chicken, eggplant parmigiano, hummus, halibut, squab, quail, guinea fowl, duck comfit, margarita pizza

I have been making single vineyard varietal cinsaut for 24 years so it is an old friend.  Every vintage has been consistently spectacular because the grape has flavors and balance and that are compatible with my traditional hand winemaking practices.

 Cinsaut Spelling Story

You may see the grape name most commonly spelled two different ways; Cinsaut and Cinsault. Labels for my first bottling were rejected because of the Cinsault spelling. I was lucky and got a one-time dispensation, but told not to use this spelling again.

I now use the spelling "cinsaut" based on requirements of TTB the federal agency that governs wine in the USA. Every wine label in the country must be approved and certified by this agency.

TTB has a comprehensive list of allowed grape variety spelling. This is the section of that list that includes cinsaut. 

No matter what the spelling this grape makes a marvelous wine.