War & Rust Quina # 7, Madison Virginia
Words from Ben Jordan himself on this awesome Kickass Fortfied Wine:
"Originally I took Barolo Chinato for inspiration, and cinchona bark remains one of the main ingredients, but in both recipe and method, it has become something different than chinato. To make it, I arrest fermentation by adding brandy when there is still sugar in the must. This makes for a slightly different sweetness level each harvest, so I always have to adjust the the bittering agents, which gets me tinkering with the other ingredients, so the recipe changes a bit every year. I use about 20 different herbs, barks, roots and botanicals including: cinchona bark, gentian, wormwood, anise, myrrh, Virginia juniper, rose petal, chamomile, and ginger root. I started it while working in Sonoma County, so it was originally made from Pinot Noir, and I made a half barrel for the first batch. It has followed me around in my day jobs, so these days there is a lot of Cabernet Franc, but there's Tannat, there's Petit Verdot, there's even Petit Manseng. I leave in the stems, as their flavor seems to work with the whole. It now has more than enough Virginia fruit that I could legally label it Virginia, but since there are over 20 herbs and botanicals, I don't bother with a place name. It is a pseudo-solera in that I have a mother batch, bottle some of it, make more at the next harvest, and then add it to the mother. It has wine going back to 2007. I don't filter it. If it ferments in the bottle one day, maybe I will change that, but I'm pretty sure that would take something away.”
Ben Jordan - Winemaker at Early Mountain Vineyards. Owner and Winemaker of Lightwell Survey
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