2015 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon


2015 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon



Warm weather in late winter led to an early bud break. Unfortunately, a cold spell in May caused uneven fruit set and much lower than normal crop yields. Continued drought left rainfall at 75% of normal. The weather was close to ideal with sunny days and cool evenings. Harvest started about two weeks early and allowed for picking at optimal ripeness. Overall quality was exceptional.

Rafael Vineyard 

The vineyard is located northwest of the town of Napa just within the boundary of the Oak Knoll District of Napa Valley AVA. Bordering Mt. Veeder, it’s a unique, highly prized hillside location with southern exposure and steep slopes that dramatically rise to well over 400 feet in elevation. Sitting in the Dry Creek alluvial fan, the well drained soils on the upper terraces are stony, volcanically derived, transitioning to silty clay loam on the lower portion of the site. The Cabernet Sauvignon vines are planted on 110R rootstock, using Clone 7. Yields are low and the vines are meticulously cane-pruned to optimize vine balance between vigor and yield. Vineyard practices are certified Napa Green Land and Fish-Friendly Farming, one of the most comprehensive environmental certifications in California.


Our philosophy is that minimal intervention in winemaking practices allows for the best expression of the unique characteristics of the vintage as captured in the grapes.  The 100% Cabernet Sauvignon grapes came from two different blocks at the top of the Rafael estate vineyard.  The grapes were destemmed to tank and fermented on the skins for two weeks. The fermenting wine was gently pumped over twice a day. The wine was then pressed off of the skins and put in French oak barrels, 30% new, and aged for 23 months before being bottled. ML fermentation proceeded naturally to completion in barrel.

Tasting Notes

The wine is a profound ruby purple in color. Classic aromas of boysenberry, cassis, clove and anise are initially expressed. With time in the glass, complex notes of cedar, dark cacao, leather, graphite and plum are also revealed. The wine has a laser-like intensity, velvety tannins and elegant structure that allows it to be enjoyed on its own or with food. The experience is capped off by a rich, smooth long finish. Additional layers of complexity and luxuriance will be revealed over multiple days. The wine will age gracefully for 15-20 years.  

Technical Information

Harvest Dates: September 16, 2015, Sugar: 26.2 degrees Brix, Titratable Acidity: 5.9 g/l, pH: 3.7, Alcohol: 14.5%, Cases produced: 434.

Add To Cart