Wine Last Sold on: October 1, 2011
Artesa Vineyards and Winery
2007 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
|Vineyard:||Foss Valley & Butala Vineyards|
|Region:||California: Napa Valley|
|Total Allocation:||Elite Operative Saturday|
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The Winery Says:
About This Wine:
This is a mountain Cabernet in all its glory, with blackberry, cassis, and plum aromas vying with notes of espresso, dark chocolate, mocha and clove. A substantial entry leads to concentrated, showy dark fruit flavors that bear the stamp of Napa Valley; rich, supple tannins provide a relaxed texture and a satisfying heft in the mouth. A hint of vanilla-spiced oak adds complexity to this bold, racy Cabernet Sauvignon.
The 2008 Vintage: A dry winter and warm, dry spring brought an early start to the 2007 growing season in Napa Valley and the vines set a relatively small crop. Weather throughout the summer months was even, with typically warm days and cool nights; there were no heat spikes in August or September save for a hot spell during Labor Day weekend. Cooler weather set in starting mid-September through October, slowing the pace of ripening, but sunny days and cool nights resulted in exceptional grape color and favor concentration. Many vintners agree that the somewhat Bordeaux-like 2007 vintage is a good candidate for aging as it gradually opens up to express its full beauty.
About The Vineyard: The grapes in this Limited Release blend were sourced from two mountain vineyards: our Foss Valley Vineyard, which sits above the Napa Valley foor at nearly 1500 feet in the Atlas Peak appellation, and the Butala Vineyard, located in the valley’s southeastern hills at 800 feet above sea level. Because these rocky sites drain the spring rains so quickly, the vines’ grapes stop growing early in the season, though favors and aromatics continue to develop. The resulting small but intensely-favored berries from these vineyards are responsible for the concentrated favors and frm structure of this blend.
Winemaking: Harvested by hand at night, the grapes from both vineyards were brought to the winery where the clusters were de-stemmed and crushed. Prior to fermentation, the fruit rested in temperature controlled stainless steel tanks for thirty days, gently extracting color, favor and tannin from the grape skins in a process known as extended maceration. When the proper tannin level had been achieved, the temperature on the tanks was raised so that fermentation could begin. Kept in separate lots by vineyard, the wine was fermented dry and placed in small, French oak barrels (40% new) for a 24-month aging program, with twice-yearly rackings prior to bottling.
About The Winery:
Artesa is Napa’s newest, most exciting winery. Our architecturally-acclaimed facility opened as Codorniu Napa in 1991, dedicated solely to méthode champenoise sparkling wine production.
But in 1997, with the arrival of a world-class winemaker and a $10 million conversion, the winery shifted focus dramatically. Artesa was born with the inaugural release of ultra-premium still wines in September 1999.
Artesa (ahr TESS uh) means “craftsman” and connotes “handcrafted” in Catalan, language of Barcelona and our owner, Codorníu, one of the world’s largest and oldest wineries.
The Codorníu Group actually consists of eight spectacular wineries whose wines are enjoyed daily in over 100 countries around the world.
So, while we are Napa’s newest, our heritage is rich. We share five centuries of history with 15 generations of a remarkable winemaking family.
About The Winemaker:
Artesa Winery Vice President of Production and Winemaking A fifth generation winemaker from Napa Valley, award-winning winemaker, Mark Beringer, is proud to continue a family tradition of making high quality wines in California’s premier AVA’s. As the great, great grandson of Beringer Winery co-founder, Jacob Beringer, Mark has always aspired to make his contribution to California winemaking. He grew up immersed in the wine industry and knew from a very young age that winemaking was his calling.
At 12, Mark went to work at his parent’s local wine shop stocking shelves and dusting bottles. It was there that he quickly became versed in the complicated language of wine only to discover that all wines are not created equal. Yearning for more hands-on experience, Mark went on to learn the ins and outs of bottling, sanitation, barrel work and harvesting while working at his uncle’s winery while attending Santa Rosa JC, and later at California State University, Fresno where he graduated in 1990 with a B.S. in Enology. After graduation Mark joined the winemaking team at Glen Ellen Winery and spent the next year and a half learning the logistical side of winemaking at a larger volume winery.
In 1992, Mark was recruited by Dan Duckhorn to join the Duckhorn winery team as an enologist and to provide support to Tom Rinaldi. Mark welcomed the opportunity to return to the type of artisanal winemaking he was so passionate about. When Duckhorn Wine Company decided to expand its portfolio beyond the Bordeaux varieties in 1994, Mark was chosen to head up the project to launch Paraduxx, a unique blend of Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon, followed by Goldeneye, the winery’s Burgundy style wines from Anderson Valley.
In 1996, Mark was promoted to Vice President of Production and took on the tasks of managing a multi-brand, multi-facility company. In 1998, Mark was named Winemaker and in 2000, was promoted to Director of Winemaking. In 2005, The San Francisco Chronicle named Mark Winemaker of the Year for his work at Duckhorn Vineyards.
During Mark’s tenure at Duckhorn Wine Company he garnered two Winery of the Year titles from Connoisseurs Guide to California Wine, was named four times Regional Winery of the Year by Wine & Spirits Magazine and won the #6 rated wine of the year in the Wine Spectator’s Top 100 of 2002 with the Duckhorn Vineyards 1999 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon.
In 2008, Mark founded Mark Beringer Consulting, working on a variety of projects within the wine industry before joining Artesa Vineyards and Winery as Vice President of Production and Winemaking in February, 2009.
Varietal Composition: 100% Cabernet Sauvignon
Vineyards: Foss Valley Vineyard, Butala Vineyard
Harvest: October 2007; average sugar at harvest, 26.1° brix
TA: 6.9 g/l
Cooperage: Aged for 24 months in 40% new, 60% used French oak barrels
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The Wine Spies Say:
SUPERIOR WINE ALERT:
This is another shining example of just how excellent the 2007 vintage can be! Today’s wine exceeds even our high standards by delivering a superior experience.
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Mission Codename: Valley floor… to infinity
Operative: Agent Red
Objective: Return to Artesa Winery, and acquire a special allocation of their stellar 2007 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, for our Elite Operative Saturday.
Mission Status: Accomplished!
Current Winery: Artesa Vineyards and Winery
Wine Subject: 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve – Napa Valley
Winemaker: Mark Beringer
The fruit for this delicious wine was sourced from a vineyard set high atop Atlas Peak, and one on the valley floor in Oakville. Grapes for today’s wine was hand-harvested from these two sources, to bring you the best fruit available.
Atlas Peak AVA, located in in the Vaca Range just east of Napa Valley and south of Lake Berryessa is well known for its high elevation, well drained volcanic soil, long sunny days and cool nights which provide excellent conditions for bold and rich red varietals and specifically Cabernet Sauvignon. Less-known, is that the region accounts for nearly 25% of the Sangiovese planted in California.
The Oakville AVA, centrally located and adjacent to Napa Valley’s famous Rutherford AVA, was established in July 1993. Oakville is considered on of the most diverse AVA’s in the Napa area and grows some of the best Cabernet Sauvignon in California.
Wine Spies Tasting Profile:
Look – Intense dark fuchsia hues. Color is evenly concentrated, from core to edge. When swirled, wine-stained legs start low on the glass, starting chubby, and thinning as they move slowly downward.
Smell – Bright and sweet with fragrant spiced blackberry, sweet cherry, dark raspberry and sweet cedar. Just beneath these sit additional aromas of bramble, fragrant dried violets, licorice, candied cherry, softly toasted oak and a hint of dark chocolate.
Feel – Softly round on the very initial attack, the wine becomes weighty and grippy, almost immediately. After a moment, the wine coats the mouth. Plush tannins and balanced acidity support the lush structure of this wine.
Taste – Generous and dark, with black fruit giving way to red fruit. Blackberry and blueberry meld with black plum. These initial flavors gently yield to cherry, raspberry and young strawberry. Under these, bramble, dried dark flower petals, soft brown spice and dark chocolate mingle with dark minerals and a hint of sweetwood, giving the wine a lovely complexity.
Finish – Extra long and flavor-filled, with dark flavors transitioning to red fruit – transitioning to soft earthy notes and spice. At the very end, dark slate minerals and the subtlest hint of sweet dried herbs remain.
Conclusion – Today’s 2007 Artesa Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve – Napa Valley elevates easily into that lofty territory that encompasses Premium Napa Cabernet Sauvignon. Classic Napa, with bold, concentrated fruit, heady aromatics and a plush feel this wine is an experience. Hailing from the 96 Point 2007 vintage (Robert Parker, Jr.), this wine gets our heartiest recommendation for those that love big Cabernet. Bold but balanced, this is a very approachable wine that our tasting panel found complex, but very easy to drink. Our special price should help you to bring a few bottles home for the Holidays – or for any special occasion that demands a wine that is certain to impress.
Wine Spies Vineyard Check:
The location of the Artesa Vineyards and Winery can be seen in this satellite photo.