After a few years of sidelong glances at perfection, the 2016 locked it down. Seductive aromas of warm black plums and spice box hint at the ethereal depths of blue fruits within. Full-bodied, ripe and powerful, the 2016 takes the classic, savory, mineral styling and opulent fruit to the next level. “It needs 7-8 years of bottle age, but it’s a rock star Napa Valley Cabernet that will keep for 3 decades.” - Jeb Dunnuck
Bill Harlan’s standards have become legendary in Napa Valley. The vintner and businessman responsible for Harlan Estate, Meadowood Resort and the ambitious winemaking-with-the-stars club that is the Napa Valley Reserve doesn’t cut corners anywhere. Back in 1993 (first releases in ’97), utilizing the same group responsible for Harlan, Bill signed vineyard contracts on four superlative hillside properties to be farmed to the team’s specifications. While four single-vineyard Cabernets are bottled separately, blending decisions dictate that not every barrel from each property will be used… which is where Matriarch comes into play. It allows the immensely talented winemaker Bob Levy to use his blending expertise to highlight the best qualities of the vintage, rather than a specific vineyard expression. The fruit sources stretch from the eastern extremes of Rutherford’s border, west and south to the Mayacamas foothills of Oakville and due north to Spring Mountain. The common themes are hillside plantings, low yields and meticulous farming. It’s exactly what you’d expect from this group of dedicated perfectionists who continue to outdo themselves.
This is really crazy with decadent and opulent aromas of dark fruit and sliced meat. Hints of dried fruit, too. Sexy. Full-bodied with firm and silky tannins that fan out into the wine and deliver a beautiful frame and focus. Drink or hold.
Always a “Wow” wine, the 2016 Quella doesn’t disappoint, showing its classic, savory, mineral style as well as stunning notes of blueberries, plums, spice box, herbs de Provence, and melted licorice. This full-bodied, ripe, powerful wine has a wealth of tannins yet leans on its depth of fruit and opulence at the moment. It needs 7-8 years of bottle age, but it’s a rock star Napa Valley Cabernet that will keep for 3 decades.