Vine Hill Ranch is a truly iconic Cabernet: a modern cult wine, an estate-grown wine with a real sense of place, the culmination of the Phillips family’s evolution from grapegrowing to winemaking over three generations. They’ve earned a real understanding of terroir through years of traversing the vineyard rows and tending the seven blocks by hand.
Winemaker Françoise Peschon’s approach to winemaking is to proceed with a minimal, gentle touch. Harvested in late September at optimal ripeness, grapes were hand-sorted, cold-soaked, and fermented by native yeast by vineyard lot. Following an extended maceration, the wine aged in new French oak for eight months before it was blended and returned to barrel for one year prior to release. Strikingly perfumed, intense yet lifted, it showcases the elegance, balance, and maturity of fruit from this unique benchland vineyard in southwestern Oakville. Lifted by a vein of minerality and bright acidity, the opulent palate imparts a complexity and lasting purity through a remarkably long finish.
“The 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon is gorgeous. Above all else, I am impressed with how much freshness the 2015 shows. Racy red cherry, plum, rose petal and lavender notes fill out the wine’s sumptuous frame. Bottled just a few months ago, the 2015 is a bit reticent, but it is nevertheless impressive. Time in the glass brings out the wine’s natural radiance. 2023 – 2040”
96+ points, Antonio Galloni, vinous.com, Jan 2018
“Deep garnet-purple coloured, the 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon opens with cedar notions over a cassis, warm blackberries and black cherries core with hints of spice box, garrigue and bay leaves. Full-bodied, firm and grainy with nice vibrant fruit expression, it has lots of oak at this youthful but that should marry nicely with a further 3-4 years in bottle. 2020-2036.”
94+ points, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, Dec 2017
“A balanced and pretty 2015 cabernet sauvignon with currant, blackberry and chocolate character. Full body, tight and focused. Juicy finish. Needs to come together with three or four years of bottle age. Classy stuff.”
94 points, JamesSuckling.com, Dec 2017