In their little corner of Napa Valley, Altamura has been quietly growing and producing some of California’s finest wines. The small winery’s hillside and valley floor estate vineyards in Wooden Valley are perched 250 to 300 metres above sea level. The soil types found on the ranch, which are similar to the Rutherford Bench and the mountainous regions of Howell Mountain, Pritchard Hill, and Mount Veeder, called for several different clones of Cabernet Sauvignon on a number of different rootstocks. Planted in 1986, the vertically-trellised vines are dry-farmed. This is a winery with exacting, no-compromise vineyard practices – real practitioners of the philosophy that wine is made in the vineyard.
This wine fermented in both open and closed-top fermenters. Some lots were allowed to macerate on their skins for up to three weeks following fermentation, a technique that encourages nuanced fruit flavours and gentle, nicely-integrated tannins. The wine was racked into French oak barrels (70% new), where it aged for nearly three years prior to release.
“Ultrarich and extracted, offering a powerful array of blackberry, licorice, gravelly earth, cedar and tobacco leaf notes. Never eases up on torque and authoritative presence. Best from 2021 through 2035.”
94 points, Wine Spectator, Aug 2017
“Produced from 100% Cabernet Sauvignon, all estate fruit and aged for 34 months in 70% new French oak, the 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon has a medium to deep garnet-purple colour and expressive nose of crème de cassis, mocha and bay leaves plus hints of fertile loam, licorice and sandalwood. The full-bodied palate is laden with spicy black fruit and earthy layers, framed by grainy tannins and finishing long and perfumed.”
93 points, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, Oct 2017