2013 La Jota Vineyard Howell Mountain Estate Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

$94.99

HISTORY The wines of La Jota have deep roots in Napa Valley. Back in 1888, winemaking pioneer W.S. Keyes planted some of the first vines on Howell Mountain, and 10 years later his contemporary, Fredrick Hess, built a stone winery and established La Jota Vineyard Co., named for its location on the Mexican parcel Rancho La Jota. Both men won medals for their Howell Mountain wines in the Paris Exposition of 1900. Today, La Jota Vineyard Co. proudly carries on this great legacy with its small-production mountain Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc. All La Jota wines are sourced from the winery’s estate and from nearby W.S. Keyes Vineyard, and they capture the intense fruit and mineral complexity of these cool-climate origins.

VINEYARD The La Jota Vineyard lies high upon a volcanic plateau, looking east over Napa Valley. Surrounded by pine, fir, oak and madrone trees, the estate stands out because of its cool, windswept climate. Here we look to vineyard blocks that produce soft-textured Cabernet Sauvignon for wines of earlier approachability, and where the decomposed granite soils of our W.S. Keyes vineyard impart a pop of bright fruit character and broader tannins.

WINEMAKING We hand-harvested grapes into small, 30-pound boxes to prevent crushing, and then we brought them to the winery for hand-sorting. After de-stemming and light crushing, the must was cold-soaked for gentle color, flavor and tannin extraction. Winemaker Chris Carpenter ermented the juice with native yeast in a combination of open- and closed-top stainless steel tanks. Following gentle basket press, the wine underwent in-barrel malolactic fermentation, rounding the acidity and integrating the vanilla character of French oak (89% new).

WINEMAKER’S COMMENTS The 2013 growing season was another near perfect year. With only a day or two approaching 100 degrees, temperatures were steady and in the sweet spot of 85°-95°F. Dry conditions throughout allowed for ideal maturation and flavor concentration. The 2013 La Jota Cabernet Sauvignon flavors impart brambly blackberry, espresso bean, toast and gravely minerality. Classic Howell Mountain, full bodied, well balanced with a lengthy finish.

Technical Notes:

Blend Composition: 75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10.5% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc, 4.5% Petit Verdot, 2% Malbec

Harvest Dates: September 17 to October 25

Fermentation: Native Yeast Fermentation

Maceration: 20 Days

Barrell Aging: 19 months in French oak (89% new)

Alcohol by Volume: 14.5%

Wine PH: 3.67

Wine Acidity: .63g/100ml

Vineyards: La Jota Vineyard & W.S. Keyes Vineyard

 

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