A stunning example of the Rutherford appellation, this Cabernet Sauvignon shows the power of the 2013 vintage. “It’s a huge, densely textured wine with super-saturated fruit expression,” says Winemaker Domenica Totty. “The highly pigmented grapes gave the wine its deep, inky purple hue. The multilayered aromas and flavors explode with brambly blackberry, cassis and black plum intermingled with nuances of earthy forest loam, freshly roasted coffee beans and cherry pipe tobacco. I find a subtle floral element that reminds me of fragrant purple iris, and bittersweet cocoa that I describe both as a taste and texture—how the Rutherford tannins feel in my mouth. This Cabernet Sauvignon would be absolutely delicious with prime rib, yet its combination of power and elegance gives it the ability to match with so many richly flavored foods.”
During Beaulieu Vineyard’s century-long history in Napa Valley, we have acquired some of the finest of all vineyard sites. We selected 80 percent of the grapes for this wine from vineyard blocks in our historic BV Ranches No. 1, No. 2 and No.10, which provided the concentrated dark-fruit character and firm structure that we desired. These vineyards, located on the Rutherford Bench, have alluvial fan soils—composed of gravel, sand and loam—that allow the vines to root deeply and develop complex minerality in the grapes. Domenica chose the balance of the grapes from highly regarded growers who have worked closely with us for many years.
We cold soaked the destemmed grapes for two to three days for gentle flavor extraction, which develops the elegant, layered fruit expression that is inherent in Rutherford Cabernet Sauvignon. During the eight- to twelve-day fermentation, we pumped over the cap to incorporate the flavor-rich skins into the juice. To balance the bold fruit expression with toasty oak character, Domenica chose 25 percent new barrels for barrel aging. She blended a small amount of Cabernet Franc to enhance the complex flavor profile.
The 2013 vintage even surpassed the highly touted 2012 vintage in grape quality. A very low-rainfall winter was followed by a dry, warm spring and nearly ideal summer. These factors resulted in balanced vine canopies, excellent fruit set and small, concentrated grapes. Perfect weather throughout harvest made for an easy, well-paced vintage that fostered expressive, beautifully balanced wines.
98% Cabernet Sauvignon
2% Cabernet Franc
Barrel Aging: 15 months - 25% French oak, 35% Hungarian oak, 40% American oak (25% new French oak barrels)
Alcohol: 14.5% by volume
Total Acidity: 5.7g/L
** Only 12 in Stock **
The 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Rutherford, usually a reasonably good value, offers plenty of fragrant cedar wood, fruitcake, and blackcurrants. It has loads of crème de casiss, full body, hard tannins, and some oak in the background. It is still slightly firm and coiled tight, but promising. I would give it 2-3 years of cellaring and drink it over the following 15-20 years. - Robert Parker 90 Points
The 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Rutherford is soft, pliant and accessible, with lovely mid-palate depth and balance. Crushed flowers, sweet red berries, mint and cinnamon are some of the many notes that grace the silky finish. Drink this attractive entry-level Cabernet over the next handful of years. - Antonio Galloni 89 Points