Robert Parker calls this “a vineyard to watch!” The simple, elegant label may be new, but the people and land behind it are versed in Napa Valley greatness. Ace viticulturalist Jim Barbour (Hundred Acre) mans the vines so that 100-point winemaker Celia Welch can make Howell Mountain magic, with tons of bright, crunchy black fruit delivered in a lusciously textured, seamless wine.
Medium to deep garnet-purple colored, the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon has a slightly broody nose to begin, offering glimpses at damp earth, charcoal and underbrush scents over a core of warm cassis, blackberry pie and black raspberries with touches of pencil lead and dried Provence herbs. Medium to full-bodied, the palate has bold freshness and a myriad of earthy sparks, framed by ripe grainy tannins, finishing long with tons of bright, crunchy black fruit. This is my first time tasting this new project high up on Howell Mountain with winemaker Celia Welch and WOW - what an impressive start! A vineyard to watch!