x
  • Country ranking ?

    101
  • Producer ranking ?

    4
  • Decanting time

    4h
  • When to drink

    now to 2030
  • Food Pairing

    fennel-Scented Duck Breasts with Pinot Noir Sauce

”THE BEST NAPA CABERNET 2008” – DANA LOTUS VINEYARD CABERNET SAUVIGNON/
FINE Wine Magazines


The challenging vintage of 2008 set the Napa vintners in position where understanding of the terroir factors of their vineyard site proved to be critical. Only by understanding the terroir of each plot of vines, the wine producer was able to make the necessary decisions in the vineyards on supporting the vines during their growth cycle and helping them to produce the best quality fruit.
As results of our tasting, we may conclude that the best Napa Valley wine producers succeeded from the challenge incredibly well. The quality of the wines shows great if not excellent. While all tasted wines will reach their optimum drinkability after 10 to 15 years there were great deal of surprisers according to wines current enjoyability. The winner of the best Napa Cabernet 2008 goes to a newcomer in Napa Valley, Dana Estates, whose Lotus single-vineyard wine which charmed us with its opulence, depth and elegance.

The Quality of the Wine
Out of the three Dana Estate owned vineyards, the Lotus vineyard located on St. Helena hillsides, stands at 1200 feet above sea level with a beautiful panoramic view of the Napa Valley floor.
This steep hillside vineyard is spread over the rocky, low-yielding soils with Western exposure. Thanks to the influence of the afternoon sun, the wines shows ripe and rich fruitiness while the three to twelve inches, fractured grey bedrock soil generates the marked mineral structure to the wine.
“This is incredibly dry, well-drained soil that has very low water holding capacity and in dry, warm vintages it reflects outstanding a level of grape ripeness,” Vawter sums up.

The vintage 2008
“2008 proved to be a tremendously challenging vintage, yet it ultimately produced some of the best wines of this decade. The vintage characteristics were defined primarily by the strongest La Niña spring for two decades,” Cameron Vawter, the winemaker of Dana Estate points out.

According to Vawter, the dry La Niña winter and an unusually warm March led to the earliest bud break on record for many of Dana Estate vineyard blocks.
“This seemed like a good thing until temperatures plummeted in late April and gave us the worst frost season in over thirty years. We used our frost fans for 32 nights during the spring. The frost, combined with some cool bloom temperatures, led to a very uneven veraison. This vintage was like no other vintage that I have experienced. A vintage is really made up of winter rains to fill the soil profile, the spring’s ability to dry the profile, summer’s ability to hold constant and then September’s warmth to either push ripening or allow it to happen slowly.”

Vawter comments also that the previous generation of Napa winemakers has compared the vintage 2008 to the spring of 1972, when the last really serious frost was experienced in the valley. However, apart from spring, he outlines that 2008 was actually a very dry, hot vintage.
“It had more heat spikes than any recent vintage. These heat spikes actually stunt a grape’s ability to ripen, and this is one reason the vintage boasts such purity and great acidity. The ripening was very rapid, preserving much of the freshness,” Vawter explains.
 

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The Story

Out of the three Dana Estate owned vineyards, the Lotus vineyard located on St. Helena hillsides, stands at 1200 feet above sea level with a beautiful panoramic view of the Napa Valley floor.

This steep hillside vineyard is spread over the rocky, low-yielding soils with Western exposure. Thanks to the influence of the afternoon sun, the wines shows ripe and rich fruitiness while the three to twelve inches, fractured grey bedrock soil generates the marked mineral structure to the wine.

“This is incredibly dry, well-drained soil that has very low water holding capacity and in dry, warm vintages it reflects outstanding a level of grape ripeness,” Vawter sums up. 

Read more
Close

Latest Pro-tasting notes

14 tasting notes

Tasting note

color

Deep, Purple and Dark

ending

Long, Flavorful and Extensive

flavors

Blackberry, Toasty, Blackcurrant, Licorice, Cherry and Violet

nose

Intense, Seductive, Refined and Complex

recommend

Yes

taste

Average in Acidity, Warming, High tannin, Concentrated, Well-structured, Perfectly balanced, Youthful, Full-bodied, Harmonious, Focused, Perfumed and Silky tannins

Verdict

Sophisticated and Impressive

Written Notes

Olive-crusted Kobe Beef Striploin with caramelized fennel & celery, root vegetable puree and a cabernet beef jus. This classic take on top shelf beef paired beautifully with the 2008 Lotus Vineyard cab from Dana's Howell mountain property. Located at 1200 feet of elevation, the wine shows "mountain concentration" from head to toe. A slightly shy nose of black fruit and faint spices, the juice explodes on the palate with deeply flavorful black cherry and blackberry framed by enough acidity and earthy structure to keep a good balance. Slightly drying tannins emerge on the back end, but not unpleasant. Delicious now, but it will be interesting to see how this ages. I suspect it will get better for many years. This wine was the favorite of the majority of the participants- it is "big cabernet" and a great wine. I liked the Helms for its slightly lighter touch and better acidity- but that is simply personal preference. If you like serious cabernet, try this one!

Information

Origin

Napa, Napa Valley

Vintage Quality

Excellent

Value For Money

Very good

Investment potential

Very Good

Fake factory

None

Glass time

2h

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 Michael Jones, Wine Blogger (United States)  tasted  Dana Lotus Vineyard 2008  ( Dana Estates )

Olive-crusted Kobe Beef Striploin with caramelized fennel & celery, root vegetable puree and a cabernet beef jus. This classic take on top shelf beef paired beautifully with the 2008 Lotus Vineyard cab from Dana's Howell mountain property. Located at 1200 feet of elevation, the wine shows "mountain concentration" from head to toe. A slightly shy nose of black fruit and faint spices, the juice explodes on the palate with deeply flavorful black cherry and blackberry framed by enough acidity and earthy structure to keep a good balance. Slightly drying tannins emerge on the back end, but not unpleasant. Delicious now, but it will be interesting to see how this ages. I suspect it will get better for many years. This wine was the favorite of the majority of the participants- it is "big cabernet" and a great wine. I liked the Helms for its slightly lighter touch and better acidity- but that is simply personal preference. If you like serious cabernet, try this one!

8m 5d ago

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Great, a very good choice! Vote now this wine in the BWW-Best Wine of the World -competition 2017?
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BWW-Best Wine of the World -competition 2017

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Dana Lotus Vineyard 2008,
Dana Estates

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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! 

 

PLEASE, VOTE YOUR FAVOURITE WINES NOW and make the difference! 

 

You can vote any Red/White wines from vintages 2008-2017 and Champagnes from 2002 vintage. Just use our search engine to find your favourite wines.

 

BWW is the largest and most important wine competition in the world in terms of amount of wines, consumers and professionals.    

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