Deep hues of purple and red reflect the density of this wine. Aromas of blackberry and raspberry are met with nuances of espresso, dark chocolate mocha, a hint of graphite and toasted oak. Sweet ripe blackberry and black plum dominate the palate with notes of anise and charred oak in the background. This is a centered wine with a tremendous, supple texture.
The season of 2012 commenced with a very dry and cold winter. The lack of water was concerning as this dry spell in Napa Valley persisted through the end of February, while the Sierras had minimal snowfall. March eased the burden with nine inches of rain, replenishing groundwater reserves. A warm spring and a moderate to hot June, July and August followed. This provided excellent ripening weather through the summer, which was then followed by a warm September, allowing a good, even and progressive harvest.
October kicked off with a hot start followed by warm conditions. Harvested by hand in the cool morning hours, the grapes were brought to the winery where they were hand sorted. Warm fermentation temperatures along with gentle cap maceration helped achieve the desired color and structure for the wine before an extended maceration time on the skins.
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93 Points, Jeb Dunnuck – 2012 Rutherford Vineyard Estate Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon immediately opens with fantastic aromatics of freshly crushed cassis, black cherries, espresso, molasses, bell pepper, savory herbs and sweet spices. This is impressive for its generous supple texture and round polished tannins. The finish is layered with dark fruits, herbs and spices which leave a lasting impression. Overall, this is a delicious wine from a fantastic vintage, that will be accessible early on. A terrific effort from winemaker Michael Schloz. (Best 2015-2025)