2012 Cabernet Sauvignon
91% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Merlot, 1% Petit Verdot, 1% Malbec and 1% Cabernet Franc from 100% estate-grown Napa Valley vineyards: 29% Spring Valley Home Ranch in St. Helena, 27% Suscol in South Napa, 16% Stags Leap District, 15% Yountville in Oak Knoll District and 13% Banca Dorada in Rutherford.
Grapes were picked at sunrise, sorted and cold soaked prior to fermentation in stainless steel. The wine was aged for eighteen months in 40% new oak barrels (50% French, 50% American) and 60% two-year-old French and American oak barrels before bottling in June, 2014. The barrel coopers used included Ermitage, François Frères, Demptos (American), Nadalié (French and American), Canton (American) and Barrel Associates (American).
The 2012 vintage marks the fortieth Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon release from Joseph Phelps Vineyards. This latest bottling highlights beautiful aromatics of dark fruit, cigar box, dried herbs, graphite notes and pain grillé. Expressive Bing cherry, licorice, blueberry and blackberry layer this silky smooth wine of great depth and personality. Richly nuanced with supple tannins and a lingering velvety finish.
The 2012 growing season proved to be excellent from start to finish in Napa Valley. It was a warmer year than the prior three, lining up more closely with the 2008 growing season’s temperatures. Bud break occurred during the first two weeks of April and both bloom and veraison took place earlier than 2010 and 2011. August, September and October offered perfect ripening weather for superior fruit with exceptional quality.