Reserve Cabernet from Napa Valley
Here is a quick recap of Michael Keenan’s words from the video as he talks about the winery’s 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve:
- Well, the 2013 Reserve Cabernet is the last release of the 2013 vintage. It’s the vintage that I’ve talked a lot about as being in the running for one of our best vintages in our now forty-year history. And what makes it so compelling to me is that there’s such a wonderful balance between the sweet and delicious, the juiciness of the depth of the fruit allied with the savory component that you really get the best of both worlds, sweet and savory.
- And that savory component just leaves you wanting to keep going, which is a wonderful attribute. And it’s also sort of the most powerful wine we make in all estate Cabernet a little bit of Merlot. And currently, the Reserve Cabernet to me captures the essence of the vintage markers that are unique to that year more than any wine I make; so, this is a fabulous embodiment of what I talk about that combination of sweet and savory, and just what I call ease of power with incredible polish.
- For a wine this young, it’s powerful but the polish of the tannins also adds to its allure now is something that you can drink now and then keep in mind this is a five-hundred case production. So, I guess this is a little bit below our norm for yields now for a Reserve Cabernet; so, this is wine that’s not just gonna be around that long. So, it’s just a great wine to have in your cellar and to have something that simply not many people are not going to have.
- History of Cabernet Sauvignon grape growing in Napa Valley: In Bordeaux, the soil aspect of terroir was historically an important consideration in determining which of the major Bordeaux grape varieties were planted. So the alluvial and dusty soils of Oakville and Rutherford were well suited to Bordeaux grape varietals. On the Keenan Winery Estate in the Spring Mountain AVA of Napa Valley, the microclimate characteristics, along with the steep hillsides and rocky/gravely composition of the soil, are not only well suited to Bordeaux grape varietals, but uniquely perfect for drawing out the intensity and exquisite flavor of their Napa Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Syrah and Zinfandel. As a result, Keenan’s Reserve Cabernet from Napa Valley is some of the most delicious you will find anywhere on earth!
- History of Spring Mountain A.V.A.: Early on, the name Spring Mountain was used in a regional context and did not refer to the name of a peak or prominent point, rather than a particularly verdant area with numerous springs, and drained by several small streams. The appellation was among the first locations in Napa Valley to receive recognition as a grape growing region. While grapes may have been grown in the area as early as the American Civil War, the first documented is that of Charles Lemme, who cultivated the 25 acres (10 ha) La Perla Vineyard just south of York Creek in 1874. Steady growth followed. In the 1880s, Jacob and Frederick Beringer, who had already opened their historic winery near St. Helena, planted a vineyard on Spring Mountain. Later in the decade, Fortune Chevalier, a Frenchman who had come to San Francisco during the Gold Rush, planted 25 acres (10 ha) and built a stone winery. Most notable among the early growers was wealthy San Francisco banker and financier Tiburcio Parrott, who established a vineyard that he named Miravalle and built a Victorian-style home that still stands on the property. In 1893, a local newspaper reported: “Old vineyardists asked him [Parrott] what he expected to do among those hills and rocks, and when told by Mr. Parrott that he expected to raise grapes and produce wine unsurpassed in the world, they laughed at him and told him his hopes would never be realized.” Parrott’s wines took first place at the San Francisco Midwinter Fair the following year and a gold medal at the World’s Fair two years later. The historic La Perla, Chevalier and Miravalle vineyards are now part of Spring Mountain Vineyard. Grape growing and winemaking declined in Spring Mountain from 1910 to 1940 due to the onset of phylloxera and Prohibition. The first reawakening of viticulture came in 1946, when Fred and Eleanor McCrea planted a small vineyard north of Mill Creek, and then in 1953 founded a legendary winery called Stony Hill. The resurgence began in earnest in the late 1960s and 1970s — with the founding of several wineries, including Ritchie Creek, Yverdon, Spring Mountain Vineyard, Smith-Madrone and, of course, Robert Keenan Winery. The name Spring Mountain was first used as an origin on Cabernet Sauvignon wines produced by Ritchie Creek in the late 1970s.
- Cabernet Sauvignon grape flavors and characteristics: Cabernet Sauvignon is the acknowledged king of red grapes in Napa Valley, accounting for forty percent of our total production and fifty-five percent of our crop value. This vine is grown throughout Napa Valley and achieves a variety of expression depending on its vineyard site. Its flavors display a wide variety of black fruits, including currant, cherry and plum, and often show notes of spice from oak aging. On the palate these wines can be dense and powerful in youth but age gracefully. When young they are best matched with robust red meat dishes such as game and braised lamb, while older Cabs are superb accompaniments to simply prepared roasts and steaks and aged cheeses.
Put your feet up, pour yourself a glass and learn more about our Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve.