About The Wine: Promontory is the latest winemaking venture from Bill Harlan, the entrepreneur and wine impresario who founded Harlan Estate in the late 1980s. Promontory is a Cabernet Sauvignon blend made with grapes sourced from an Oakville vineyard a mile south of Harlan Estate. Harlan bought the vineyard, which is 400 to 1,100 feet above sea level, in 2008. It had been planted by Girard winery. The winemaker for Promontory is Cory Empting, and the first commercial release was the 2008 vintage. About 1,000 cases are made annually, and it is generally available only by mailing list. Bill Harlan was a stockbroker and developer before devoting himself full time to creating wineries whose wines become cult classics. Besides Harlan Estate, which makes Cabernets that regularly earn 100 pts from reviewers, he also founded Napa Valley Reserve, a private club where wine cognoscenti blend their own varietals, and Bond, another celebrated Napa Valley brand.
About The Region: Oakville AVA is one of the two or three most prestigious appellations in the United States. Located in the heart of Napa Valley, its 5,000 vineyard acres produce some of the world’s most acclaimed Cabernet Sauvignon, including such California “cult” Cabs as Screaming Eagle and Harlan Estate. Before those boutique producers rose to fame in the 1990s, Oakville was already renowned as home to Robert Mondavi, Opus One and Groth Vineyards, among others. Along with the famous wineries, there are premier vineyards in this AVA, including Martha’s Vineyard and To Kalon Vineyard. To Kalon was first planted in 1868 by H.W. Crabb, one of California’s first viticultural researchers, and he named the vineyard after the ancient Greek phrase for “most beautiful.” Though many grapes can be successfully grown in Oakville, Cabernet Sauvignon is king. Merlot and Chardonnay are also frequently planted. Oakville Cabs are prized for their richness, complexity and weight. Oakville was designated as an AVA in 1994.
Full-bodied, rich, pure and multidimensional, this wine is a kissing cousin of the great Harlan Estate...This is another 25-30-year wine from the winemaking team of Harlan Estate and Bond.
Wonderfully plush and deep but with outstanding inner-mouth energy to the dark fruit and smoky mineral flavors. Boasts a remarkably noble, silky texture and great sweetness for such a powerful and unevolved wine.
...hits the palate with graphite, crushed rocks, cedar, black fruit, mocha and pencil shavings. There is a pure vibrancy...