2009 Chateau Montelena Estate Cabernet Sauvignon
currant, blackberry, cherry, bell pepper, olive, asparagus, spice, ginger, oak and vanilla
currant, blackberry, cherry, cedar and cigar box
"The Montelena Estate Cabernet Sauvignon and Montelena Estate Zinfandel are grown in one of the world's most unique winegrowing properties. The site's diversity of soils and slopes translates directly into the layers of complex flavors in our wines. The Estate vineyard is comprised of varied terrain, from flat to steep hillsides. The vineyard gently slopes downward towards its base, where a small patch of sedimentary soil was deposited by the settling of an ancient ocean or lake. Extending out from the Napa River is the alluvial soil, the most prevalent type on the property. In the back and outside areas of the vineyard are volcanic soils, formed by ancient lava flows caused by tectonic uplifting. This diversified soil profile results in aromatic, rich and full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon, characterized by the unique earthy-berry flavor that is the Montelena Estate." - Winery
"There are hundreds of decisions that go into making a bottle of wine and it all begins in the vineyard, with the land. One of the most basic and essential ingredients in growing a great grape is starting with healthy soils. Mother Nature has determined the makeup of all the soil types found on our Estate vineyard, but it is the responsibility of the vineyard team to ensure that these soils are healthy and balanced. Instead of chemical products, we use only sustainable, organic farming methods to promote the health of the soil and ultimately preserve the land's productivity. For example, instead of using chemical pesticides, we combat destructive pests by growing cover crops and releasing ladybugs into the vineyard."
"While our vineyards are naturally low-yielding because of their rocky soil types, we help to keep the vine yield low by dry farming as well as thinning our crops each year. Smaller yields produce more intense, concentrated, and complex wines. To ensure even ripening of the grapes, we carefully monitor the canopy, removing leaves several times each growing season. For the same reason, the vines in each vineyard block are trellised specifically for optimum exposure to the sun and to promote air circulation. At harvest time all of our grapes are hand-picked by our experienced vineyard crew, picking the grapes at night to capture the natural flavors we prefer in our wine."
"The wines produced by Chateau Montelena are handcrafted in our cellar by our dedicated winemaking team. The wines express the fruit from which they are made and the vintage in which they are grown, with all other elements in balance to complement the fruit. To achieve this goal, we use modern crushing, de-stemming and pressing equipment to process the grapes as gently as possible. We then use temperature-controlled stainless steel tanks to allow the wines to ferment slowly and evenly. Once fermentation is complete, the wines are transferred to small, French oak barrels to begin the aging process. We use a combination of new barrels along with older, neutral barrels to ensure that the natural flavors of the grapes are not masked by oak. After blending and bottling, the wines receive enough aging time prior to release so that they can be enjoyed right away or laid down to mature for years to come." - Winery