Chateau Montelena
Calistoga, Napa Valley
March 2018

The story of modern Napa Valley wine could not be told without the efforts of Chateau Montelena. Built in 1882 by Alfred Tubbs, it was the northernmost winery in Napa Valley and the first in Calistoga. In the years pre-prohibition, it was Napa’s 4th largest producer by volume. Then prohibition, World War II, and a series of sales found it in the hands of Jim Barrett in 1972. Modernization of the vineyards and winery, and the victory of the 1976 Paris Tasting catapulted Chateau Montelena into the forefront of Napa Valley wineries.

 

We are thrilled to give you access to a deep vertical offering from this prestigious winery. This is a rare opportunity to build a collection of what is arguably their best wine: the “Montelena Estate” Cabernet Sauvignon.

 

Each year this wine is the selection of Chateau Montelena’s best lots of Cabernet Sauvignon. 100% Calistoga estate-grown fruit is aged in French oak for 22 months, this is world-class Cabernet by any measure. Many of these vintages are entering their prime drinking window now.

 

We will accept your requests for these cases for a limited time, and when we close this offer we will aim to satisfy as many requests as we can. No payment is necessary up front, only at the time of delivery. As always, we sell only by the unmixed case lot, and single case orders may be subject to delivery fees.

 

These wines will arrive in summer 2018.

 

You can call or email anytime to “talk wine”: 647 955 8872 or [email protected]. I hope to hear from you.

 

Sincerely,

 

Chris

Chateau Montelena
“The Montelena Estate” Cabernet Sauvignon 2003
$269.95 per bottle, cases of 3

 

In 2003 a warm March and wet April set the stage for an excellent growing season that ensured healthy vines and consistent, even sunshine throughout the summer. With no unexpected challenges as the season continued, a warm September ensured that the grapes got the right amount of heat and sunlight in order to fully ripen just before they were harvested.

 

Fourteen years later, the 2003 vintage has stood the test of time, as the flavours have become complex on the nose and the palate, with the tannins rounding off nicely with a smooth velvety feel that are only possible because of a great growing season and extended time in the bottle.

 

“A big wine from the Barrett family (14.2% alcohol), this 2003 exhibits earthy black currant fruit, the restrained but intense Montelena style, full body, good richness and impeccable balance, purity and density. The colour is a healthy dark ruby/purple and the wine shows lots of cassis. In spite of the restrained aromatics, the palate is rich, full-bodied, substantial and persuasive. This 2003 is approachable now, but it will be even more gorgeous 15, 20 and 25 years from now. This is a heritage wine from this great estate in northern Napa Valley.”

94+ points, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, June 2013

 


Chateau Montelena
“The Montelena Estate” Cabernet Sauvignon 2004
$269.95 per bottle, cases of 3

 

“Healthy medium ruby. Very ripe aromas of cassis, kirsch, tar, espresso and mint. Suave, fine-grained and vibrant; not a powerhouse but boasts a texture of liquid silk. The very intense dark berry and dark chocolate flavours show a captivating restrained sweetness and great energy. This very young but impeccably balanced wine spreads out subtly to saturate the palate on the very long, rising finish, which features noble tannins and terrific juicy verve. A stunning bottle.”

95 points, Antonio Galloni, vinous.com, June 2015

 

“A classic, old style Napa Cabernet Sauvignon, Montelena’s 2004 reveals beautiful purity along with lots of creme de cassis fruit, a full-bodied mouthfeel, and a long finish. By Montelena standards, it is a bit more powerful than usual (14.1% alcohol). These wines have an uncanny ability to age for 2-3 decades, and while the 2004 is slightly more forward and evolved than other vintages have been (2001 and 2002), it should last for 20-25 years. “

95 points, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, April 2014


 

Chateau Montelena
“The Montelena Estate” Cabernet Sauvignon 2005
$269.95 per bottle, cases of 3

 

“Deep garnet in colour, the 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate leaps from the glass with notes of crushed blackberries, black cherries and Bing cherries with hints of raspberry leaves, bay leaves and underbrush plus a waft of pencil shavings. Medium-bodied, nicely poised, very fresh and beautifully elegant, it has a solid frame of very fine-grained tannins and a very long, berry-laced finish. Still incredibly youthful. 2018-2040.”

95 points, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, Feb 2018

 

“Good deep ruby-red. Complex aromas of currant, licorice, graphite, bitter chocolate, smoked meat, tobacco and brown spices. Began juicy, penetrating and quite youthfully unevolved, but aeration brought a suppler, rounder texture and more generosity to this impressively structured wine. Complicating notes of bitter cherry, menthol and minerals. This will require a good eight to ten years of aging but the substantial tannins are sweet and lush. Very long, pure and powerful on the finish. Barrett compared this to top previous vintages like 1986 and 1997”

93+ points, Stephen Tanzer, vinous.com, May 2008

 


Chateau Montelena
“The Montelena Estate” Cabernet Sauvignon 2006
$269.95 per bottle, cases of 3

 

 “Bright ruby-red. Blackberry, cassis and boysenberry aromas complemented by licorice, violet, menthol and bitter chocolate. Juicy, intensely flavoured and quite fresh but a bit youthfully disjointed, with a firm tannin/acid spine supporting the crushed dark berry and menthol flavours. The wine’s substantial tannins will need time to knit, but this wine retains good aromatic freshness.”

92 points, Stephen Tanzer, vinous.com, May 2009

 

“Good deep ruby-red. Complex aromas of currant, licorice, graphite, bitter chocolate, smoked meat, tobacco and brown spices. Began juicy, penetrating and quite youthfully unevolved, but aeration brought a suppler, rounder texture and more generosity to this impressively structured wine. Complicating notes of bitter cherry, menthol and minerals. This will require a good eight to ten years of aging but the substantial tannins are sweet and lush. Very long, pure and powerful on the finish. Barrett compared this to top previous vintages like 1986 and 1997”

93+ points, Stephen Tanzer, vinous.com, May 2008


Chateau Montelena
“The Montelena Estate” Cabernet Sauvignon 2007
$269.95 per bottle, cases of 3

 

“Deep garnet coloured, the 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate displays a very slowly evolving nose of crème de cassis, chocolate-covered cherries, vanilla pod and smoked meats with touches of dried Provence herbs, cedar chest and cloves. Medium-bodied, plush, rich and generously fruited in the mouth, it has a wonderfully spicy character and long baking spice and black fruit-laced finish. 2018-2042.”

95 points, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, Feb 2018

 

“Good dark red. Musky nose combines blueberry, black raspberry, cedar, licorice pastille, chocolate, mocha, licorice, sage and wild herbs, along with a lightly resiny quality. Supple, spicy, dry and classic, showing lovely lift and depth to its rather primary blueberry, licorice and spice flavours. The wine’s high-pitched floral quality and its resiny spice tones nicely perfume the middle palate and finish. With its enticing lift and light touch for the vintage, this is just about ready to drink, but I suspect it will continue to gain in weight and thickness with further cellaring.”

94+ points, Stephen Tanzer, vinous.com, May 2017


Chateau Montelena
“The Montelena Estate” Cabernet Sauvignon 2008
$269.95 per bottle, cases of 3

 

“It exhibits a full-bodied power as well as lots of black fruit, licorice, damp earth and spice characteristics. Textured and rich with sweeter tannin and more upfront appeal than the 2007, the long, impressive 2008 should age for 20-25 years.”

(93-95) points, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, Dec 2010

 

“Good deep ruby. Lovely lift and purity to the aromas of cassis, violet and bitter chocolate. Juicy, vibrant and intense; less dense than the 2007 but more perfumed in the mid-palate. Very fine-grained wine, finishing long and aromatic, with firm tannic bite and a late note of bitter chocolate. “Two thousand eight was an impossible year to make 15% wines with a 4.0 pH in Napa Valley,” said Bo Barrett, adding that “it’s more fun to be working in the classical world. In 2008, there’s less jam to block the terroir and minerality of the vineyard. Due to all the sunlight, we made Cabernet jam in 2007, but the vineyard influence shows more clearly in 2008 and 2006.” The estate purchased some small tanks for this vintage and thus the team was able to pick with more precision. Barrett also told me he backed off on the pumpovers, relying more on delestage (rack-and-return) for cap management.”

(91-94) points, Stephen Tanzer, vinous.com, May 2010


Chateau Montelena
“The Montelena Estate” Cabernet Sauvignon 2009
$269.95 per bottle, cases of 3

 

“Montelena’s 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate wraps around the palate with serious depth. Even with all of its intensity, the 2009 has a silkiness that makes it incredibly delicious at this early stage. Red berries, flowers, tobacco and sweet herbs all flesh out on the generous, radiant finish. While many 2009s are a bit tight today, Montelena’s 2009 Estate is showing very nicely, although it is keeping some cards close to the vest. I imagine the 2009 will start to enter its prime drinking window around age 8-10 and drink well for at least another decade beyond that. Anticipated maturity: 2017-2029.”

93+ points, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, Dec 2012

 

“Good red-ruby. Highly perfumed aromas of black cherry and menthol lifted by rose and spice oils. Suave, pure and vibrant, with red berry and spice flavours lifted by a pungent minty quality. Nothing black fruit about this vintage. Finishes with fine-grained, rather silky tannins and terrific energy. Less forbidding at this young stage than many recent vintages of this wine, and in a distinctly food-friendly style. This wine benefited dramatically from its final months in barrel.”

93 points, Stephen Tanzer, vinous.com, May 2012

 


Chateau Montelena
“The Montelena Estate” Cabernet Sauvignon 2010
$269.95 per bottle, cases of 3

 

“Bright, saturated ruby-red. Deep, complex nose offers cassis, blueberry, mocha, espresso, menthol, bitter chocolate and tobacco. Densely packed and vibrant, with layered, seamless flavours of cassis, licorice and minerals. Shows an almost chocolatey ripeness yet retains outstanding verve. This chewy, super-concentrated wine finishes with ripe, pliant tannins and outstanding length and mineral reserve. Should be long-lived.”

94+ points, International Wine Cellar, June 2013

 

“Medium to deep garnet in color, the 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate is a little mute at this stage, offering up glimpses of crushed blackberry, red plums and wild blueberries notes with touches of pencil shavings, dried Mediterranean herbs and forest floor. Medium-bodied, it has a velvety backbone and mouth-filling red and blue fruits, finishing long and earthy. Drink 2018 – 2040”

94 points, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, Feb 2018

 

“The 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate is immediate, juicy and expressive in this vintage. At the same time, it seems pretty clear that the 2010 needs at least a few more years in bottle. Today, it is a bit disjointed as it is neither primary, nor showing too many tertiary notes or complexity. Sweet tobacco, leather, licorice, menthol and spices emerge over time, but the 2010 is a wine built for the cellar. There is plenty of density, but it needs time to emerge.”

94 points, Antonio Galloni, vinous.com, Nov 2013


Chateau Montelena
“The Montelena Estate” Cabernet Sauvignon 2014
$148.95 per bottle, cases of 6
Current vintage – arriving late April

 

The 2014 showcases the classic balance of Bordeaux structure and ripe California fruit that Chateau Montelena is known for. The final blend is composed almost entirely of Cabernet Sauvignon (98%), with the rest being a tiny quantity of Cabernet Franc (2%) and Petit Verdot (1%). The wine then went through an extensive 22 months of aging in 100% French oak (22% of which was new oak) in order to add complexity and soften the firm tannins that are characteristic of Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot.

 

“A total knock-out, the 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate captures all the potential of this great site. Powerful, voluptuous and structured, yet very much within the context of classicism that has defined these wines for several decades. Dark red cherry, stone fruits, smoke, licorice and scorched earth, along with beams of tannin, wrap around the palate. Deep, virile and explosive, the 2014 is a must have. Don’t miss it! 2022 – 2034”

95+ points, Antonio Galloni, vinous.com, Dec 2016