The Etude Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon is handcrafted with grapes from unique benchland vineyards representing the major sub-appellations of Napa Valley. Sure to continue gaining complexity and revealing additional character with age, the wine is suitable for immediate enjoyment or cellaring for another two decades.
"A ripe, flavorful cabernet, showing layers of ripe, round fruit with currant, blackberry and chocolate character. It’s full and layered with so much going on. Nice, balanced finish for the richness in this wine. Needs three or four years to come around. ” - James Suckling
A bold and complex Cabernet Sauvignon, this wine is big and plush with voluptuous layers of ripe dark berry fruit aromas and flavors of black cherry, black currant, cassis and raspberry pie, alongside baking spice notes of cardamom, clove and nutmeg. Hints of cedar and oak spice dance on the palate (a hint at the well-integrated oak) and are enveloped by the velvety-rich tannins and unctuous structure. This Cabernet is warm and inviting with tremendous depth and concentration. Beautifully drinking upon release and will age for many years to come.
Overall, 2017 proved to be a slightly smaller yielding vintage but one of exceptional quality. A brief period of warm weather occurred during Labor Day weekend which accelerated the harvest in some areas. Temperatures subsided just when we needed and the fruit was allowed to mature and ripen perfectly on the vines before harvest officially began. Overall, a quick and intense harvest, with althea fruit picked within two to three weeks, but the quality of the vintage shows great flavor intensity, perfect ripening and maturity, lovely balance and complexity.
The Etude Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon is handcrafted with grapes from unique bench land vineyards representing the major sub-appellations of Napa Valley. The 2017 Cabernet was sourced with fruit from some of the most highly regarded winegrowers in Napa Valley — Vine Hill Ranch and Gamble Vineyard in Oakville, Bear Flats Vineyard in Calistoga, Morisoli Vineyards in Rutherford and Meteor Vineyard in Coombsville. By deliberately sourcing fruit from this group of exemplary vineyards, this wine exhibits the full potential of Cabernet fruit flavors and textures with vitality and finesse.
Etude’s philosophy remains steadfast and this Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon was crafted with very minimal winemaking intervention. The grapes were cold soaked for 3-5 days and fermented on their skins in open top fermenters. An extended maceration period followed fermentation to help modify the depth and mouthfeel of the wine, and to fully extract color, flavor and aromatics. The young wine was then racked into small French oak barrels – using a selection of coopers and forests to accentuate the vineyard distinctions – where it aged for 20 months in 100% French Oak (75% new). To maintain the unique characteristics of each vineyard, each block and lot was kept separate until final blending.
For more than a decade Jon has fashioned Etude wines with a simple creed. Inspired winegrowing diminishes the need for a winemaker to intervene in the cellar. Whether sourcing from the estate Grace Benoist Ranch in Sonoma's Los Carneros, or vineyards like Fiddlestix and North Canyon in famed growing regions of California's Central Coast, his focus is on coaxing the very best from the vineyard. It shows in every glass of Etude.