Buy 3 - 2018 J Lohr Seven Oak Vineyard Paso Robles
Vintage : 2018
Region : Paso Robles
THE J LOHR STORY
Fifty years ago, Jerry Lohr embarked on a career change. What followed would reshape the landscape of the California wine industry and create one of the country’s most popular wine brands.
In the late 1960s, Jerry Lohr began an extensive investigation of California grape growing regions – searching for the ideal location for his first vineyard. Jerry was raised on a South Dakota farm; his agricultural roots armed him with an innate sense for the relationship between climate, soil, and location. His research and instincts led him to the Central Coast, an area just beginning to explore its potential for winegrowing.
Four decades ago, the California Central Coast had not yet emerged as one of North America’s world-class winegrowing regions. With little history or viticultural precedent, planting on the Central Coast was a gamble. One of a handful of early pioneers, Jerry Lohr was among the first to realize the inherent potential of Monterey and Paso Robles for producing high quality grapes and superb wines.
PIONEERING MONTEREY AND PASO ROBLES -JERRY LOHR LEGACY-
It’s no coincidence that the Central Coast’s emergence as a world class winegrowing region runs parallel with the establishment and growth of J. Lohr Vineyards & Winery. Founder Jerry Lohr is one of the region’s pioneers and has played a larger-than-life role in bringing the area to prominence.
Jerry’s instincts led him to two regions located about 75 miles apart. In the early 1970s, he chose Monterey County’s Arroyo Seco district for its cool, windy climate and rocky soils as ideal for Chardonnay. In the 1980s, he recognized the potential of Paso Robles for growing Bordeaux varietals, especially Cabernet Sauvignon – given the area’s rich soils and dramatic diurnal temperature swings between warm days and cool nights.
After Jerry Lohr’s nearly decade-long search for the right place to plant his first vineyard, he chose a site in Monterey County that was to become the heart of the Arroyo Seco appellation. Jerry originally planted 280 acres in 1972 and 1973 near Greenfield. Monterey County’s Arroyo Seco appellation has proved ideal for growing layered, complex Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. Brisk winds and fog off Monterey Bay, stony, well-drained soils, and a lack of damaging fall rains all combine to produce grapes with trademark fruit intensity and balancing acidity. In 1974, Jerry unveiled the first J. Lohr winery in San Jose.
In the early 1980s, Jerry Lohr saw the potential for great Cabernet Sauvignon further south. Borrowing a lesson from the French—that great Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon excel in very different growing conditions—Jerry began planting Cabernet Sauvignon and other red varieties in San Luis Obispo County’s little-known Paso Robles region in 1986. With the hands-on devotion of an artisan farmer, Jerry tended to the vines while diligently working toward the creation and development of an adjacent winery and barreling cellars; J. Lohr’s Paso Robles production facility was opened in 1988.
A classic wine icon for thirty vintages – one of America’s favorite Paso Robles Cabernet Sauvignons.
Thanks to a “Miracle March,” the 2018 growing season will be remembered as the fourth in a string of near- normal rainfall years in Paso Robles. Over 70% of the season’s rainfall was accumulated in a 3-week period beginning the first of March, which kicked off a rare vintage of exceptional quality and yield. A stretch of warm weather in May assured a good bloom and fruit set on the developing clusters. This was followed by an unprecedented heat spell beginning after the 4th of July holiday, where we saw an unthinkable 38 days over 100 degrees Fahrenheit. Ever-patient to allow fruit to fully ripen, we began the Cabernet harvest in earnest on the last day of September in our vineyards on the north end of the appellation. We then worked our way south through the later ripening blocks into the first week of November. In more than three decades of producing Seven Oaks Cabernet in Paso Robles, we have seen a handful of vintages that stand out from the rest. The 2018 vintage joins the ranks of 1997, 2007 and 2013, showing exceptional depth of color, fruit intensity and finesse.
The predominant sources for our J. Lohr Estates Seven Oaks Cabernet Sauvignon are our estate vineyard located directly opposite our J. Lohr Paso Robles Wine Center and two newer sites just to the north: the J. Lohr Sinclair Ranch and the J. Lohr Jones Ranch. The Seven Oaks vineyard was initially planted on its own rootstock, utilizing some of the original plantings from indigenous Estrella clones widely planted in Paso Robles. The soils in our vineyards vary from gravelly clay loam to limestone-based soils; over a relatively small parcel of land, and various rootstock and clonal combinations have been used to maximize the expression of each individual site. The different soil types and planting combinations add to the complexity of each Seven Oaks vintage.
91 Points, Editors’ Choice
WINE ENTHUSIAST, NOVEMBER 2020
- For an affordable wine that’s available almost everywhere in the country, this bottling is hard to beat. Fresh aromas of black currant, elderberry, lilac, pepper and charcoal lead into a rich palate of cassis, oak and charred beef, all lifted by herbs and peppercorns.