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    My Column

    ST. HELENA: NAPA VALLEY'S HOLY GRAIL

    by Igor Sill - April 2016

    Introduction by Barry Wiss

    Barry Wiss is recognized as one of the most influential wine personalities of Napa Valley.  He is a Certified Wine Educator, Certified Sommelier, holds the Advanced Level Certification from the Wine and Spirits Education Trust and serves on the Board of Directors and Examiners for the Society of Wine Educators.

    Being a professional wine educator for Trinchero Winery in St. Helena has given me the great fortune of traveling to many great wine regions. They are all amazing places! Try to name a wine region that is not a beautiful place. However, when it comes to the heart of Napa Valley (St. Helena), I feel as lucky as a tourist every time I drive to work. Not only is St. Helena a charming small town with great people, it offers the very best from Mother Nature to produce some of the world’s most extraordinary wines. It is the narrow center of the hourglass shaped Napa Valley with deep, loosely compacted soils coupled with a perfect Mediterranean climate, Napa Valley’s “Holy Grail”.

     

    No other wine region on the planet draws as much attention or visitors as Napa Valley. It is visited by some five million people every year, making it the second most visited tourist destination in California (Disneyland is # 1).  Perfect for a day or weekend trip from San Francisco, Napa Valley awards one with beautiful scenery, exceptional wineries and world-renowned wines.

    I’m frequently asked "Which Napa vineyards produce the very best Cabernet Sauvignon wines?"  This isn't an easy question to answer as there are so many exceptional vineyards, talented winemakers and microclimates in Napa.  

    My favorite American Viticulture Area (one of fourteen AVAs within Napa Valley), is the treasured St. Helena.   So, let's explore St. Helena's vineyards as a starting point of this much revered wine region.

     

    Napa Valley contains well over 400 wineries, with St. Helena home to some 174 wineries and vineyards welcoming guests with tours, wine education and tasting rooms.  While enticing, the sheer number of winery options can be overwhelming.  In this article I've focused on St. Helena's particular AVA, which wineries offer exceptional award winning red wines along with its rich history.

    Since acquiring my own St. Helena AVA vineyard some 28 years ago, I've taken the opportunity to get acquainted with, tour and taste most of the popular wineries, with numerous repeat visits amongst my favorites.

     

    On long summer afternoons, the vineyards of St. Helena delight in the California sunshine, under the watchful eye of Mount Saint Helena from which the town drew its name. The source of the name is evident, but the identity of the person who named it has been variously defined and at times disputed.  One authority assigns the honor to Henry Still and William Taylor while celebrating a party in Still's store one evening.  A discussion for a town name brought about a consensus by the entire party with the name St. Helena being bestowed, and a subsequent act incorporating the town of St. Helena approved on March 24, 1876.

     

    St. Helena AVA covers just over 6,800 acres of vineyards that are situated at the narrowest point between the Vaca and Mayacamas mountain ranges making it the largest, planted vineyard area of any of the Napa sub appellations.  The town and its vineyards are located where the Napa Valley narrows substantially, approximately half a mile wide, increasing the radiated heat from the valley hillsides. The resulting narrow corridor funnels cool evening bay fog and produces wide temperature swings, as a result, it is considered to be the pinnacle of high quality red wine viticulture.  

     

    St. Helena boasts a unique topography quite different from its surrounding regions, which create an optimal microclimate for growing cabernet sauvignon grapes.  The exceptional drainage of its gravely volcanic loam soils imparts an environment for Cabernet Sauvignon like nowhere else in Napa Valley.  St. Helena's appellation is considered by many to be one of the very best wine growing regions given that its valley floor soils tend to be deeper, much more fertile and produce vigorous growth.  The grapes are closely managed to produce intensely concentrated grapes.  These exceptional valley floor vintages receive the perfect combination of “terroir” microclimate, barrel aging and winemaker attention.

     

    You might naturally assume that the north is cooler than the south, but actually, truth is that the valley gets progressively cooler, as it moves south from Mount Saint Helena. Thus, St. Helena vineyards are noticeably warmer than those of its southern neighbors. Cool Pacific breezes coming over the Mayacamas ranges from the west as well as from San Francisco Bay cools the vines in the evenings quickly and deliver exceptionally intense fruit given the long warm days.  As the breezes and fog move northerly they gradually surrender their coolness with distance from the Bay and ocean.

     

    The history of winemaking in St. Helena is legendary.  David Fulton planted one of the very first St. Helena vineyards in 1858, followed by Charles Krug opening his winery in 1861, Jacob Beringer in 1876 with the distinction of being on the National Historic Register, and Spottswoode winery, established in 1882 by George Schonewald. 

    Into the valley's funnel are squeezed a host of other prestigious wineries, among them Duckhorn, Joseph Phelps, Markham, Grace Family and V. Sattui.

     

    Some of the highest wine critic ratings cite St. Helena wineries as producing the very best wines based on awards at prestigious wine competitions, along with ratings from publications such as The Wine Advocate, Wine Spectator and Wine Enthusiast. 

    The area’s wines are discernibly distinctive and continually rank among Napa Valley’s very best.  Spottswoode’s 2010 Estate Cabernet received 100 points from Robert Parker of The Wine Advocate, with V.Sattui’s Paradiso, a perfectly balanced Bordeaux-style blend receiving Wine of the Year, Platinum award, 97 points from Critics Choice.  Beringer’s 2007 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon received 97 points from Robert Parker, while David Fulton Winery’s 2008 Petite Sirah garnered a Four Star Gold from California’s largest and most prestigious Wine event, Orange County Fair Wine Society Competition.

     

    And, that's why St. Helena has become the Cabernet Sauvignon social heart beat of Napa Valley and my absolute "go to" favorite for exceptional wines. Enjoy.

     

     

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    My Yesterday

    MY TOP 10 BEST EVER RED WINES

    It took me some time to put together my list of the very best Cabernet Sauvignon and red blends I’ve ever tasted over these past 5 years.  To relive those memories and tasting experiences over the span of those years was hauntingly unforgettable.  I assess a wine’s quality based on its coloration and purity, aromatic flavors and the memory of its long finish after the glass is emptied.  I hope you appreciate my “top ten best wines ever” list as I had fun retrieving these great memories along with the very special folks and occasions I shared those memories with.  Here are my top 10 best ever red wines:

     

    1) Chateau Margaux, 1982: This was my very first foray into the grand vin experience with bottled history.  This elegantly soft, refined Bordeaux ended with a parade of freshly ripened strawberries and cherries in a rich silky texture.  Incredibly memorable. 100 pts

     

    2) Chateau Latour, 2000:  Presented with this stunning vintage by Artemis Group’s (owner of Chateau Latour), President, Patricia Barbizet, I found it to be an exceptionally great wine with fresh, lavishly rich character, freshness and dark, inky purity. A truly exceptional vintage. 100 pts

     

    3)Chateau La Mission Haut-Brion, 2005: A youthful, however, extraordinarily harmonious wine. Aromas are packed with berries, truffle, cassis and tobacco pleasures. 99 pts

     

    4) V.Sattui, Paradiso, 2011:  V.Sattui’s Bordeaux-style red wine changes in varietal composition from vintage to vintage.  My absolute favorite is the 2011, a blend of 72% Cabernet Sauvignon, 13% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc, 3% Petite Verdot and 2% Malbec.  Achieved “Wine of the Year” 97 points and Platinum Medal, Critics Challenge. Stunning in every sense of the word. Perfectly balanced and elegantly blended.  The memory of Paradiso is going to stay with me for a very long time. Decant. 97 pts

     

    5) Chateau Montelena Cabernet Sauvignon, 2010: A well balanced Cabernet Sauvignon with a cassis filled bouquet, offering a full bodied, complex, intensely vibrant blackberries to silky cherry finish.  Absolutely incredible- one of their very best Cabs. 96 pts

     

    6) Dalla Valle Maya, 2002:  a proprietary blend containing 50% Cabernet Franc and 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, which originally debut in 1989.  The 2002 Maya is perfectly blended, boasting a rich, inky purple color with deep intensity. 96 pts


    7) Opus One Cabernet Sauvignon, 2012: Superb silky textures, deep red with black fruits, cedar and cigar box scents.  One of Opus One’s very best vintage years.  Absolutely excellent.  Decant. 95 pts

     

    8) Spottswoode Family Estate Cabernet Sauvignon, 2011: One of the very few 2011 Cabernet Sauvignons that evolved properly in this challenging vintage year.  Excellent, deep garnet coloration, with bouquets of savory cherry and blackberry fruits, black olives and a hint of vanilla spice.  Decant.  This wine is in high demand and has sold out at the winery. 94 pts

     

    9) Peju Province Winery Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, 2011: An excellent vintage year for the Peju family.  This wine exhibits a lovely bouquet of black currants, raspberry plum jam with coffee aromas along with great structure and balance. 94 pts

     

    10) Caymus 40th Anniversary Cabernet Sauvignon, 2012:  A voluptuously rich Cab, with a deep blackberry concentrated finish. The 2012 vintage is one of Napa’s all-time great harvests and 2012 celebrates 40 years of Caymus Vineyards.  Decant. 92 pts

     

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    My Tomorrow

    THE 10 BEST NAPA VALLEY WINERIES TO VISIT By Igor Sill, along with insights from thousands of Wine lover reviewers, March 2016

    No other wine region on the planet draws as much attention or visitors as Napa Valley. Its visited by some five million people every year, making it the second most visited tourist destination in California (Disneyland is # 1).  Perfect for a day or weekend trip from San Francisco, Napa Valley awards one with beautiful scenery, exceptional wineries and world-renowned wines. 

    For many San Francisco Bay Area tourists, the opportunity of tasting exceptional quality wines is an absolute must.  Napa's soil, gentle climate and growing conditions (terroir) make for ideal grapes, coveted by wine enthusiasts everywhere.

    Napa Valley contains well over 400 wineries, with most welcoming guests with tours, wine education and tasting rooms. While enticing, the sheer number of winery options can be overwhelming.  In this article I've focused on wineries that offer excellent wines, rich history, an informative and entertaining adventure.

     

    Wine is not to be feared, though at first it can seem daunting.  A knowledgeable wine tender can erase those fears while guiding your pallet to an enjoyable and memorable experience on your very first visit.  If you are a first time visitor, you may wish to consider picking the right time of year to visit.  The best times to visit Napa is during the Spring and Fall seasons, meaning April to early June and the September to October timeframes.   Early fall is our "crush" period, when wineries are harvesting their grapes.  If you want to experience a winery in action, come in the Fall.  The other optimal time is early Spring (late February to March) when the Valley's mustard plants are all in full, brilliant yellow bloom. 

     

    Since acquiring my own Napa Valley vineyard some 28 years ago, I've taken the opportunity to get acquainted with and tour most of the popular wineries, with numerous repeat visits amongst my favorites.  My recommendations, supported by researching 3,000+ yelp.com reviews, for the best, as well as the hidden gems, are from my own first-hand experience of their hospitality, exceptional wines, the facility's ambiance, history & beauty, the wine tasting experience and the memories that linger long after the visit is over.

     

    Excellent wines are certainly appreciated, however, the entire experience a winery and its staff provides leaves its guests wanting to return.  Wineries achieve first class status when their staff enjoys greeting people, are extraordinary experts in their fields and capable of conveying their knowledge in a friendly, fun and understandable fashion.  Life is way too short for lousy wine and a mediocre time.  And so, with the help of yelp.com reviews, here are 10 of my favorite wineries with tastings and tours that are open to the public.

     

    Of course, this list only scratches the surface. Napa has dozens of other wineries worth noting, such as Beaulieu, Cakebread, Clos Pegase, Ehlers, Mondavi, Pine Ridge, Shrader, Silver Oak and many more. 

     

    The smaller wineries will often receive guests on an appointment only basis, so always call ahead, or visit their website for availability.  Also, note that Napa zoning restrictions preclude picnic eating at all but a couple of Napa estates, so hold off on that picnic basket.

    Most wineries will charge a fee for the tour or tasting, but given the amount of information garnered and the quality of wines poured, along with the beautiful and stylish settings, these visits are an incredible bargain.

     

    1) V.Sattui Winery, St Helena, Napa (www.vsattui.com):  This is the most popular and most visited winery in all of Napa.  Hours are 9-5 in the winter and 9-6 in the summer months with no appointment required, 7 days a week.  It's a top favorite because they offer old world charm, 80 different varietals of wines, champagne and ports, vast picnic grounds, personalized winery and barrel tasting tours, a legendary Italian deli with fresh foods, cheeses and a friendly, well trained staff.   It's one of the few wineries that consistently wins top awards for all of their wines.  Winemaker, Brooks Painter received the Winemaker of the Year award, 2015.  The main tasting room is as close to a party as you’ll get in the often seriously snobby Napa.  For those who want to learn and talk about terroir while indulging in aficionado conversations about serious wines should go to their Vittorio tasting room (Tower).  There's always a party going on at this winery because it's always packed with visitors, frequent BBQs, special events, entertainment and Spring weddings.  This winery has a full time executive food pairing chef, Marc Golic, who combines phenomenal wine and food pairing tasting events.   It's also a great spot to relax with their wines while enjoying a family lunch on their picnic grounds.  V. Sattui is a family, dog friendly winery where you'll see children having a great time as well.  This is truly a wonderful and gorgeous place to spend your day.

     

    2) Chateau Montelena, Calistoga, Napa (www.montelena.com): Chateau Montelena thrust itself onto the world's stage in 1976 as its 1973 Chateau Montelena Chardonnay, crafted by winemaker Mike Grgich, took first place at the famed "Paris Tasting” beating France’s best white Burgundies.  While their Chardonnay continues to be one of the most age worthy Chardonnays produced in California, their Bordeaux style Cabernet Sauvignon now occupies the winery's focus these days.  With its impressive old world stone chateau, the unusual Chinese grounds with lake and the enchanting, if not small, greeting room, it certainly delivers a memorable wine tasting experience. Though the picnic grounds are reserved for Wine Club members only, visitors are welcome to meander around and take in the sites. 

     

    3) Beringer Vineyards, St Helena, Napa (www.beringer.com):  Another historic Napa winery dating back to 1875 when brothers Jacob and Frederick,  German immigrants, established this winery.  Once there, they planted the beautiful "Tunnel of Trees" (1885) that still adores Highway 29 in front of their winery.  They built the elegant Rhine House where they once lived as well as the grand stone winery building, and hand dug the wine caves.  The lush landscaping surrounding the ornate Rhine House gives you a sense for what Napa used to be like in those days.  Last year, Mark Beringer, great-great grandson of founder Jacob Beringer joined the winery as its Chief Winemaker.  Beringer offers a 30-minute tour that guides one through the Old Winery and historic tunnels, winding up in the iconic Rhine House mansion with a wine tasting that includes a selection of three wines.  Absolutely magical.

     

    4) Inglenook Winery, Rutherford, Napa (www.inglenook.com):  As one of the original Napa wineries, the elegant, ivy-covered Inglenook was founded by Finnish sea captain and Wine Connoisseur, Gustave Niebaum in 1879.  Gustave was passionate about making fine wines in small quantities.  In 1975, Francis Ford Coppola acquired the winery from the Niebaum family and spent considerable time, money and energy restoring it back to its magnificent original splendor.  It has since been known by several names, ala Niebaum-Coppola, Coppola and Rubicon until 2011, when Francis Ford Coppola acquired the Inglenook trademark, paying more, he said, than he had paid for the entire estate.  He has since, restored the historic name Inglenook to the estate so that it remains a true crown jewel of Napa Valley.  Tours are by appointment and definitely worthwhile so that you can appreciate these amazing grounds.

     

    5) Luna Vineyards, Napa, CA (lunavineyards.com): Co-founders Michael Moone and George Vare launched Luna Vineyards in 1995.  Wonderful, magically modern and an absolutely amazing small estate vineyard close by to downtown Napa and a short distance from Silverado Resort.  You can leave your car parked at your Napa B&B and easily get there via bike.  Luna, located on Silverado Trail is the largest producer of Pinot Grigio in Napa. They offer a sunny patio area with ample comfy chairs to relax in while tasting their wines.  Luna is more like a wine bar than a working winery, with music playing and a relaxed comfortable setting.  You can also catch the beautiful scenic views of the historic Silverado Trail overlooking the vineyards from their rooftop tower.  Reservations are recommended.

     

    6) Opus One, Oakville, Napa (www.opusonewinery.com) This winery originated as the joint venture between Robert Mondavi and Baron Philippe Rothschild who teamed up to create this magnificent winery focused on producing a Bordeaux styled blend based on Napa Valley floor Cabernet Sauvignon.  Opus One Winery delivers a luxurious wine experience. The estate is impressive, especially when driving down the center driveway to the winery entrance.  Looking out across Opus One's vineyards from the upstairs terrace, you immediately sense the beauty of Napa Valley.  This is a winery to just sit back, relax and absorb a wonderful glass of wine with the company of good friends.  It doesn’t get any more luxuriously sophisticated than this, so take plenty of pictures while there.  Constellation Brands acquired Robert Mondavi winery in 2004 and entered into a management agreement with Baron Rothschild to manage Opus One.  The Winery tours are by appointment only, so be sure to call in advance to secure your reservation.

     

    7) Peju Province, Rutherford, Napa (www.peju.com): Peju offers more than 30 sustainably-farmed wines (some of which are exclusive to wine club members)  in their landmark tasting room tower.  They offer an amazing art collection gallery upstairs, pristine gardens, unique culinary events, reserve and barrel tastings.  Their culinary wine experiences include hands-on cooking classes, chef's table lunches, as well as wine and food pairing education classes.  As you enter their grounds, you'll note a collection of carefully placed sculptures while roaming the manicured gardens.  Wonderful family deserving of their great yelp reviews.

     

    8) Spottswoode, St Helena, Napa (www.spottswoode.com): Spottswoode is a true family owned historic winery in the west side of St Helena in the Napa Valley.  Established in 1882 by George Schonewald, the estate is distinguished by the historic Victorian home portrayed on their wine labels.  Owner Mary Novak established the winery in 1982, and it is managed by her daughters Beth Novak Milliken, its President & CEO and Lindy Novak, who runs the winery's wholesale marketing program.  The family produces a small portfolio of 3 delicious varietals, Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon and a miniscule amount of Syrah.  Their hospitality and tasting room is in a quaint Victorian farmhouse nestled amongst the vines. Tours are available on Monday through Fridays at 10AM with no more than 10 people allowed, so call in advance as this is a popular site.  Phone (707) 963-0134 or email tours@spottswoode.com to make a reservation.

     

    9) Stag's Leap Wine Cellars, Oakville, Napa (www.cask23.com): Founded in 1970 by Warren Winiarski, this winery brought international acclaim to Napa Valley winemaking when their 1973 Cabernet Sauvignon won the famous 1976 "Judgment of Paris" tasting.  A bottle of 1973 Stag's Leap Wine Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon was inducted into the Smithsonian National Museum in 1996 as a result of being awarded first in this competition and to reflect the impact that the achievement had on the US wine industry.  The winery's newly remodeled facilities provides floor-to-ceiling views of its vineyards as its centerpiece.  The winery's cave "is the moral center of the universe" according to founder Warren Winiarski.  He installed an amazing floor-to-ceiling Foucault pendulum at the center of the vaulted caves. It's an awesome sight to behold as it swings methodically.  The winery was sold to a joint venture by Chateau Ste Michelle and Marchesi Antinori in the summer of 2007. Reservations are accepted Monday through Friday from 10AM to 4:30PM at tours@cask23.com or (707) 261-6410

     

    10) Castello di Amorosa, Calistoga, Napa (www.castellodiamorosa.com): Castello di Amorosa knows how to make a huge first impression.  Set on a Calistoga knoll, this authentically styled, 13th Century Tuscan castle winery is unlike any other you'll visit.  It took some 15 years for owner Dario Sattui (founder of V.Sattui Winery) to construct it and has all the elements you'd expect from an authentic Italian castle, such as a moat with drawbridge, high stone walls, gargoyles, a church and fully equipped torture chamber.  The castle winery produces hand-crafted Italian styled wines including Cabernet, Merlot, Primitivo and Sangiovese.  A number of guided tours and tastings are available. The castle hits all the marks: delicious wines that you can only get from here, unforgettably gorgeous grounds, delectable foods and cheeses, and a friendly, knowledgeable staff.  $25 gets you into the castle along with 5 tastings.

     

    The author Igor Sill farms a terraced cabernet sauvignon vineyard in St Helena, Napa, California.  He's a passionate wine lover; writer; certified Court of Master Sommeliers; attended UC Davis' winemaking program; Member, Napa Valley Wine Technical Group; Judge, International Wine Challenge, London UK and holds his Masters from Oxford University.

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    Me

    Igor Sill farms a terraced cabernet sauvignon vineyard in St Helena, Napa, California. He's a passionate wine lover; writer and holds his Masters from Oxford University.

    Sill Family Vineyard is a small, family-owned vineyard dedicated to growing world class Cabernet Sauvignon grapes. We are located in St. Helena Napa Valley between the Mayacamas and Vaca mountains. Our terraced hillside vineyard was planted with over 880 cabernet sauvignon vines that are clones grafted on 07/110R rootstock.

    UC Davis, Winemaking Program, 2015
    Selected as Judge, International Wine Challenge, London UK, 2013, 2014
    Knowledgeable on Bordeaux region wines and châteaux
    Member, American Society for Enology and Viticulture (ASEV)
    Certified Court of Master Sommelier
    Owner, Linkedin: Court of Master Sommeliers Alumni - 798 Sommelier members
    Member, Napa Valley Wine Technical Group
    Member, American Society for Enology and Viticulture

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Wine Moments

Here you can see wine moments from tastingbook users. or to see wine moments from your world.

Igor Sill, Wine Maker (United States)  had a wine moment

“ I extracted a bottle of 1984 Chateau Margaux from my cellar, contemplating the petite Filet Mignon centered dining of the evening. Instead, I exchanged it for a 2009 Uptick Vineyards Chalk Hill Sauvignon Cabernet. What a wonderful decision that turned out to be. This wine is a point of reference for one of California’s greatest reds from Sonoma County. It’s a wine that waves superb quality, balance and character. The density of the wine takes mes back to classics like Napa's Georges de Latour’s Private Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon of 1958. Uptick’s 2009 Chalk Hill Cabernet Sauvignon is a shining star for Cabernet Sauvignon and proves why Sonoma is one of the most exciting up and coming winemaking regions in the world.

No longer is the region obsessed with Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir wines. Sonoma, and Uptick Vineyards have instead turned towards a new classicism of vibrant fruit, focus and lustfully long finish. Uptick’s 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon delivers all that and more. 96 points.”

10d 2h ago

1 Wines 1 Producers

Igor Sill, Wine Maker (United States)  had a wine moment

“ I extracted a bottle of 1984 Chateau Margaux from my cellar, contemplating the petite Filet Mignon centered dining of the evening. Instead, I exchanged it for a 2009 Uptick Vineyards Chalk Hill Sauvignon Cabernet. What a wonderful decision that turned out to be. This wine is a point of reference for one of California’s greatest reds from Sonoma County. It’s a wine that waves superb quality, balance and character. The density of the wine takes mes back to classics like Napa's Georges de Latour’s Private Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon of 1958. Uptick’s 2009 Chalk Hill Cabernet Sauvignon is a shining star for Cabernet Sauvignon and proves why Sonoma is one of the most exciting up and coming winemaking regions in the world.

No longer is the region obsessed with Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir wines. Sonoma, and Uptick Vineyards have instead turned towards a new classicism of vibrant fruit, focus and lustfully long finish. Uptick’s 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon delivers all that and more. 96 points.”

10d 2h ago

1 Wines 1 Producers

Igor Sill, Wine Maker (United States)  had a wine moment

“ I extracted a bottle of 1984 Chateau Margaux from my cellar, contemplating the petite Filet Mignon centered dining of the evening. Instead, I exchanged it for a 2009 Uptick Vineyards Chalk Hill Sauvignon Cabernet. What a wonderful decision that turned out to be. This wine is a point of reference for one of California’s greatest reds from Sonoma County. It’s a wine that waves superb quality, balance and character. The density of the wine takes mes back to classics like Napa's Georges de Latour’s Private Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon of 1958. Uptick’s 2009 Chalk Hill Cabernet Sauvignon is a shining star for Cabernet Sauvignon and proves why Sonoma is one of the most exciting up and coming winemaking regions in the world.

No longer is the region obsessed with Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir wines. Sonoma, and Uptick Vineyards have instead turned towards a new classicism of vibrant fruit, focus and lustfully long finish. Uptick’s 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon delivers all that and more. 96 points.”

10d 2h ago

1 Wines 1 Producers

Igor Sill, Wine Maker (United States)  had a tasting of  9 Wines  from  9 Producers 

It took me some time to assemble my list of the very best Cabernet Sauvignon and red blends I’ve ever tasted over these past 8 years. To relive those memorable tasting experiences over the span of those years was hauntingly unforgettable. I assess a wine’s quality based on its coloration and purity, complexity and balance, aromatic flavors along with the memory of its long finish after the glass is emptied.  I hope you appreciate my “top ten best wines ever” list as I had fun retrieving these great memories along with the very special folks and occasions I shared those memories with. Here are my top 10 best ever red wines:

30d 8h ago

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BWW-Best Wine of the World -competition 2017

BWW -Best Wine of the World -competition has started.  We welcome You to join thousands of experts to choose the best wines of the world. You decide the winners by voting! 

 

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Niepoort Vintage 2015, Niepoort
Pouilly-Fumé Grande Cuvée des Edvins 2015, Joseph Mellot
William Randell Shiraz 2014, Thorn-Clarke Wines
Château Latour 2010, Château Latour
Château Smith Haut Lafitte 2009, Château Smith Haut Lafitte