JS99 James Suckling
Blackberries, blueberries, raspberry kir, sweet tobacco and black truffle. Full bodied with chewy tannins and superb texture and length. Extremely poised and powerful. Finishes with so much fresh leather and blueberries. Goes on for minutes. Try after 2023.
JD98 Jeb Dunnuck
A solid step up, the 2016 Les Pavots comes from vines planted in 1989 and is a mix of two separate sites in Knights Valley. This straight-up phenomenal Cabernet offers a powerful nose of ripe black fruits, tobacco leaf, chocolate, and spring flowers, and it has a Margaux-like complexity and elegance. Full-bodied on the palate, it has a multi-dimensional, seamless texture, building tannins, and a great, great finish. It’s a baby of a wine that needs 4-5 years of bottle age, but it will probably merit a triple-digit score in 7-8 years and keep for three decades. Rating: 98+
RP95 Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
A blend of 62% Cabernet Sauvignon, 18% Cabernet Franc, 13% Merlot and 7% Petit Verdot, the very deep purple-black colored 2016 Les Pavots Proprietary Red Wine sings of crushed blackcurrants, blueberry preserves and blackberry pie with hints of camphor, black soil, truffles, crushed rocks and red roses plus a touch of garrigue. Full, rich and with wonderful finesse in the mouth, it has very finely grained tannins and plenty of vivacity, finishing long and earthy. 3,700 cases produced, to be released in the spring of 2019.
WS93 Wine Spectator
This delivers good intensity, with a racy and defined beam of plum sauce, black currant preserves and black licorice, all carried by a graphite spine. On the toasty side, with fruit to match. Very solidly built. Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Petit Verdot.
The near perfect 2016 growing season started with a warm February and early bud break. While California’s drought continued, rains were sufficient to meet the vineyard’s needs. Cool damp conditions at blooming resulted in a smaller than normal fruit set. After veraison, a single pass of green harvest brought the crop into optimal balance. Overall, the vintage was slightly cooler than average, with consistently warm and sunny conditions and only one heat spike. Moderate temperatures at harvest allowed gradual picking as each block achieved perfection, providing excellent flavor development and slightly lower potential alcohol. The vintage produced delicate, classically
styled wines with firm acidity and bright fruit.
Grown on the slopes of Mount St. Helena in Knights Valley, the distinctive aromas and flavors of our proprietary blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, and Merlot clearly display their hillside origins. Rocky, rhyolitic soils created through volcanic activity millennia ago, contribute a mineral richness and add to the wine’s complexity. Spanning 49 acres, Les Pavots ascends to an elevation of nearly 1,400 feet. Merlot and Cabernet Franc grow on the cool upper slopes and Cabernet Sauvignon grows just below.
WINEMAKER’S TASTING NOTES
2016 Les Pavots meets the eye with a near-black ruby color and deep ruby rim. The nose displays a sophisticated bouquet of fresh leather, morel mushroom, vanilla bean, black fruit, cherry, blackberry, blueberry coulis, and a stylish ‘garrigue’ touch. Fullbodied and elegant, the wine offers the same rich, ripe fruit impressions on the palate. The mouth feel is dense and round, with supple tannins and subtle mineral notes leading to a long finish. Approachable now, the wine provides a classic presentation of our estate’s terroir. It will handsomely reward four years of cellaring and continue to age gracefully for two decades.
September 26 - October 10, 2016
62% Cabernet Sauvignon, 18% Cabernet Franc, 13% Merlot, 7% Petit Verdot
18 months in 100% French oak barrels from select artisan coopers
Bottled unfined and unfiltered
May 17, 2018
April 1, 2019