June 9, 2009

For me?

You shouldn't have.

One of our favorite publicists sent us a Cabernet Sauvignon from Piña Napa Valley to commemorate the Lab's first anniversary.

Napa Valley, D'Adamo Vineyard, Cabernet Sauvignon, 2006.

This can't be a sample. It's a single-vineyard Cabernet. The bottle is very fancy, etched with gold. The wine-makers are actually vignerons (the Piña family have sustainably farmed vineyards in Napa for 5 generations). The wine-making is non-interventionist (mostly); the wines aren't fined, only lightly filtered, and commercial yeasts are used only minimally. This is way too nice to be a sample. Surely, this is a gift.

The Lab has a strict "No Samples" policy (presently under review by the Lab's Ethics Board). But we have no such rules against gifts.

The wine's aromas are dark berries, black cherry and kirsch, with notes of dusty sandalwood, camphor and stems. It's young; there's a phenolic bite, but still approachable with elegant, understated fruit. The barrel effects are gentle and welcoming. There's a taut structure that seems to literally spread out with time in the air; a dark chocolate finish stretches from curt to prolonged after the wine has time to breathe.

There's enough stuffing and complexity here to think that with a couple years in the cellar, this could be spectacular. And it's very good now.

Thank you!


Andy G. said...

Fantastic bottle of wine. We did a tasting there last spring and brought home a bottle of the Howell Mountain to cellar for 5-10 years. They are a very unknown producer with a huge future.

Mike Duffy said...

Plus, Pina has a blog: http://pinanapavalley.blogspot.com/

Director, Lab Outreach said...

Andy, I think you're right on about the potential for the Howell Mountain. The fruit is pretty interesting now, but I think it needs some bottle age to integrate all of its elements.

Ken Payton said...

Congratulations on your first year!

hamish.cameron said...

I want some! do you send gifts to Oz?