2008 Moraga Red
Winemaker’s Tasting Notes 

The 2008 growing season marked the second consecutive year of sub-average rainfall, creating naturally balanced vines with only moderate growth and small canopies.  Overall, the summer was mild, with little in the way of the extremes that might have affected flowering or fruit set.  The only anomaly was that, overall, the summer was a couple of degrees warmer than normal.  A few minor heat spikes occurred in late August and early September, but these are a normal occurrence at Moraga.  A small storm visited the vineyards in late September, dropping ¼” of rain.  October started out a bit on the warm side, but it was followed by a cold front that retarded further ripening.  The Santa Ana winds kicked up in mid-October and pushed the remaining grapes to ripeness, ending the season on a very good note. 

The unremarkable weather produced a rather remarkable wine.  A bit like a ballerina at the top of her game, Moraga 2008 Red Wine is a study in restrained power, balance, and grace.  Consistency is a virtue, and the same aroma and flavor components that have provided the common thread of every Moraga vintage since 1989 come to play in the 2008 vintage.  The aroma is interestingly complex – currant, Marion berry, black plum and the slightly herbal note of fine tobacco are seamlessly interwoven with sandalwood, a dusty mineral tone, and the floral scent of violets.  The palate encompasses the same elements as the nose, along with a hint of blackberry syrup, cedar, and a blueberry component derived from the merlot portion of the blend.  The French oak is exceptionally well-integrated and the tannins are berry-skin soft and smooth.  This is a sophisticated wine with a very persistent finish.

We continue to be astonished by the consistency of the wines produced from this very special site.  We perceive our role to be that of stewards whose primary responsibility it to faithfully produce wines that are the distilled essence of a unique place. The fact that many of the same flavor and aroma components consistently reveal themselves with every vintage of Moraga suggests that we’re on the right track.  We strive for perfection, knowing that the achievement of that goal is unlikely. That yearning, however, is what propels us to excellence.  Thank you for sharing our dreams and visions.

Tom Jones, Proprietor 
Scott Rich, Winemaker
Carlos Contreras, Vineyard Manager