2008 Renteria Cabernet Sauvignon Stags Leap
Composition: 100% Cabernet Sauvignon
Vineyard: 100% Steltzner Vineyard, Stags Leap District, Napa Valley
Harvest Date: October 1, 2008
Brix at Harvest: 27.2
Finished pH: 3.3
Finished TA: 7.37 g/L
Cooperage: Aged 22 months in 50% New French Oak
Winemaker: Karen Culler
Production: 550 cases
Release Date: Fall 2012
VINEYARD: The Cabernet Sauvignon grapes for this wine came from the dry farmed Steltzner Vineyard in the Stags Leap District, planted in 1996 to clone 7. The vines are planted in the new style of Napa Valley, with narrower spacing and thus smaller vines. These vines have the advantage of producing nice elongated open clusters with small berries that typically shatter, which leads to more character in the wine.
VINTAGE: In 2008 winegrowers met the challenges of a crazy weather year. It began with intense storms that brought high winds and heavy rains to the region. Then spring was the driest on record, ending with 60% of normal rainfall. Cold temperatures and frost threats held on for more than three weeks in the spring. Then, within the same week, vineyards were hit with a multi-day heat spike that brought early season temperatures into the triple digits. This resulted in fewer clusters with smaller berries. Later, a week-long heat spell over the Labor Day holiday ratcheted everyone into high gear. Then, just as quickly as the heat arrived, temperatures dropped to well below normal. The red varieties languished on the vine with optimal hang time, excellent ripening and balanced structure.
TASTING NOTES: The natural acidity from wines in the area is a perfect complement to the intensity of the tannins. The wines from 2008 will be more long lived wines, having lower alcohol and less tannin than in 2007. The wine is fresh, lively and balanced with soft tannins and layers of textures. The characteristic Stags Leap flavors are dark stone fruits and bramble berries. This berry aroma is especially present in the Renteria Cabernet.