In 1976 Chateau Montelena put California in the forefront of world-class winemaking. That year a who’s-who of the French wine and food community gathered for a blind-tasting in Paris. When the scores were tallied, the French Judges were convinced the top-ranked white wine was one of their own. In fact, it was Chateau Montelena’s 1973 Chardonnay. Time magazine heralded this event with an article titled “The Judgment of Paris.” Over forty years later, few wineries anywhere in the world can boast a record of consistency comparable to Chateau Montelena.
“I have most Montelena Cabernets in my cellar (one of my friends has all of them), but at the end of the tasting, just to prove what aging potential these wines have, we did a blind tasting of a wine I rated 93 and guessed to be a very ripe year such as 1984 or 1990. It turned out to be the 1976 Cabernet Sauvignon North Coast, an amazingly rich wine offering loads of cedar, spice box, and mature Cabernet flavours, a wonderful, sweet, fleshy mid-palate, and beautiful ripeness in the finish. This is another example of why Chateau Montelena over the last thirty years has been the most consistently fine producer of top-flight, world-class Napa Cabernet Sauvignon!” – Robert Parker, The Wine Advocate, December 2006