The wines here at Chateau Montelena are often described as having classic “old-world” structure with ripe California fruit, and it is in years like 2010 that this really shines through. What that means is that these wines tend to have more acid, lower pH, and more moderate alcohol levels as compared to some of the flashy “modern” Cabs. This classic chemistry allows them to pair very well with a wide variety of dishes and sets them up for graceful aging. The beauty of our style is that you get all the wonderful ripe flavors that California is known for, but with much more expression of place, and without all the noise and distraction of high alcohols and overwhelming new oak flavors.
Nose- Blackberry jam, vanilla, and allspice leap out of the glass yet gracefully yield to notes of dried plum, coffee bean, and perfume with some patience.
Palate- Deceptively soft up front, with fresh strawberry and raspberry immediately apparent. These instantly give way though to density and concentration of flavor as the tannins and acidity come into focus.
Finish-The finish is elegant and balanced with the aforementioned ripe flavors and textures of the vintage comingled with bright acid, cocoa, crème de menthe, and chalky minerality.- Chateau Montelena Winery