Chateau Montelena Napa Cabernet Sauvignon 2019 - 750ml

Chateau Montelena Cabernet Sauvignon 2019 - 750ml

Chateau Montelena Napa Cabernet Sauvignon 2019 - 750ml

Regular price $79.97
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90pts Wine Spectator

Solidly built, showing an array of singed vanilla and cocoa along the edges, with a core of steeped plum and blackberry compote flavors. The slightly chewy finish is scored by tar and savory accents, giving this a bit of an old-school bent in the end. Best from 2023.

Tasting Notes

Pure and powerful, this wine opens with fresh blueberries, blackberry pie and cassis. The endless dark fruit is complemented by a range of baking spices: vanilla at first, but also clove and cinnamon. The first sip instantly reveals the character of this Cabernet: dense and chewy with bright red fruit, incredible tension and pure, fine grain tannins. Not only is everything in its place; but the layers of flavor, the depth of the fruit and the sublime texture are constantly rearranging. Each glass will be a unique experience. In contrast to the dynamic palate, the finish is focused and stout. Abundant cocoa, espresso bean and black pepper dovetail into dark, black fruit while tart raspberry and strawberry jam linger.

Winemaker Notes

Everyone fondly remembers the wines from 2005 or 2013 when quality was simply there for the taking, and that was the case with 2019. Amusingly, as a winemaker, our favorite vintages are typically those that follow a Hollywood-esque storyline with unforeseen challenges, plenty of character development, and of course a final victory. With that said, it is just as gratifying to hit that pitch out of the park if the opportunity is there. Moreover, while it’s true that every vintage builds character, growing seasons like 2019 beget gratefulness and reflection in reminding us why Napa Valley in general and the Montelena Estate vineyard in particular are so special. In short, this vintage exemplifies all of the characteristics that one could seek in delicious, age-worthy wine.

Winery Notes

Chateau Montelena’s history is one of the deepest and most storied in the Napa Valley and California. Founded just north of Calistoga by a senator and San Francisco entrepreneur in 1882 at the turn of the century, it was one of the largest wineries in the state. Prohibition put an end to Montelena’s winemaking, and the next major era began in 1968, when Jim Barrett purchased the estate. Jim fell in love with this exceptional property, blessed with a complex mix of soils, slopes and biodiversity of wildlife and fauna. He had a dream of creating wine at the level of the great First Growths of Bordeaux, and set about replanting the vineyard, outfitting the winery with modern equipment, and studying the processes necessary for farming and winemaking at the highest quality level.

In 1976 Chateau Montelena put California at the forefront of the wine world. That year a who’s-who of the French wine and food establishment gathered for a grand tasting at the Inter-Continental Hotel in Paris. Four white Burgundies were tasted against six California Chardonnays. When the scores were tallied, the French Judges were convinced that the top-ranking white wine was one of their own. In fact, it was Chateau Montelena’s 1973 Chardonnay, rated above all other wines. This seminal event has been memorialized in the book "The Judgment of Paris," by George Taber, as well as in the 2008 feature film Bottle Shock.

Today Chateau Montelena’s distinct 19th century stone structure stands as a quality icon in Napa Valley, consistently producing some of the finest wines in California. Master Winemaker Bo Barrett, Jim’s son, now runs the estate with the help of Winemaker Matt Crafton and Vineyard Manager Dave Vella.

Blend: 91% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Merlot

Winemaker Matt Crafton

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