The 2016 Georges de Latour Private Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon is bursting with a bouquet of cassis, blueberry, blackberry, violet and wild sage, exhibiting extraordinary concentration, depth and elegance of this superior vintage. Full-bodied and rich on the palate with lingering flavors of dark blackberry, root spice, chocolate and molasses supported by perfectly balanced acidity which adds length, juiciness and freshness to an everlasting finish. Plush “Rutherford Dust” tannins support the ever-expansive palate, while seamlessly integrating with full-bodied texture, crafting a wine that shows grace, and approachability now, but with underlying power and structure to keep this wine alive for decades to come. Well integrated notes of vanilla and toasted oak spices - from aging in new French oak barrels - heighten aromas and dance on the lengthy finish. To enjoy this wine at its full potential, we recommend at least five years of bottle aging; however, if you can’t wait, decant before serving.
The extended drought was causing concern as the 2016 growing season began, but welcomed winter rain hinted relief. After a relatively dry January we enjoyed significant February rainfall, with mild temperatures. Bud break was early, but was slowed by heavy April showers. While still early by historical standards, picking began about a week later than 2015, around Labor Day, and continued leisurely, allowing the grapes to reach full maturity. A traditionally-sized harvest followed the lighter 2015, and the extended mild season balanced the acids and added complexity to the flavor layers. Considered a perfect harvest and a winemaker’s dream vintage, conditions produced a Cabernet with beautiful fruit as well as concentration of flavors, highly saturated color, and layers of complexity.
Grapes were hand-selected from the finest Cabernet Sauvignon vines on the western bench of the Rutherford AVA in our iconic BV Ranches No. 1 and No. 2, planted by Georges de Latour in the early 1900s. We focused on clonal selections (6, 4, 169, 5197, 7 and 8), which yield small berries with high skin-to-juice ratio needed to make intense, long-lived wines. Fruit was handpicked and optically sorted at the winery for highest quality selection. These vines are deeply rooted in well-draining alluvial fan soils of Rutherford, considered one of the finest Napa Valley regions for Cabernet Sauvignon.
Our state-of-the-art winery, dedicated exclusively to crafting GDL Private Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, fermented in roughly 50% new French oak barrels which enhances the dense, rich texture. The balance of the must fermented in stainless steel and concrete fermenters to preserve fruit freshness. Following judicious extended skin contact and in-barrel malolactic fermentation, the wine was pressed and returned to barrels for aging. A small amount of Petit Verdot was blended to further enhance the aroma and flavor profile. We selected our barrel coopers from the top 10 premium barrels to craft a Cabernet with incredible structure. This barrel regime is very important to the elevated quality of our Georges de Latour Private Reserve.
- 97% Cabernet Sauvignon
- 3% Petit Verdot
- Aged: 22 months in French oak
- Alc: 14.9%
- TA: 6.0 g/L
- pH: 3.75
The intensity of fruit in the nose is so impressive with blackberries, blackcurrants and lavender. Extremely aromatic. Full-bodied, tight and focused with polished and chewy tannins. Blackberries, currants, walnuts and hazelnuts on the palate. Solid core of fruit and ripe tannins. Classically structured. 97% cabernet sauvignon with petit verdot. Don’t try this until 2022 and onwards. - James Suckling 98 points