Chateau Montelena shot to fame in 1976 at the iconic Judgement of Paris that shook the wine world to its core when their 1973 Napa Valley Chardonnay won first place against an enviable line-up of top French Burgundies. The result was a shock to the wine trade all over the world and changed the history of California wine - and Chateau Montelena - forever.
Dark garnet, nearly violet in the glass.
The aromatic intensity of this wine is irresistible. Fresh berries and dried cherries comingle with bergamot, lavender, mint, gunpowder, and sage without a single element dominating another.
Fresh and dynamic, with cranberry, cola, and raspberry jam. The acidity is laser-focused, the spine pulling the layers of flavor into harmony with the wine’s supple, yet dense, structure. The tannins here serve to elevate not overwhelm the kinetic balance of texture, ripeness, and vineyard character.
Toasted hazelnut and vanilla emerge as the wine leans savory with mushroom, black pepper, and cedar. The Merlot in the blend really shines here with rhubarb, cassis, and velvety softness.
Introduction to Chateau Montelena
The premise behind our flagship wine is decidedly simple: it’s unapologetically Montelena. With over 40 years of experience in this dynamic and distinctive vineyard, we’ve recognized the value of blazing our own trail outside of others’ conventions and norms. It takes confidence in our land as well our people, farming, and winemaking to buck the trends and fads that perpetually morph and meander through the wine world. Most of all, we set the standard for ourselves, not relative to the rest of Napa Valley or the vintage expectations, but based on our own potential and our own drive to make this wine better every year. is is not without risk, and is certainly not the easy path to take, but it’s inherently part of who we are, our legacy and our future.
The Montelena Estate Cabernet Sauvignon is grown in one of the world's most unique winegrowing properties. The site's diversity of soils and slopes translates directly into the layers of complex flavors in our wines.
The Estate vineyard is comprised of varied terrain, from flat to steep hillsides. The vineyard gently slopes downward towards its base, where a small patch of sedimentary soil was deposited by the settling of an ancient ocean or lake. Extending out from the Napa River is the alluvial soil, the most prevalent type on the property. In the back and outside areas of the vineyard are volcanic soils, formed by ancient lava flows caused by tectonic uplifting.
This diversified soil profile results in aromatic, rich and full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon, characterized by the unique earthy-berry flavor that is the Montelena Estate. Our decades-old Zinfandel vines, planted in volcanic soil, combined with our 10-year-old vines in alluvial soil, produce a wine with a spicy, ripe berry flavor.
|Cultivar||88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Merlot, 1% Cabernet Franc|
14.2 % alc vol
|Units of Alcohol per Bottle||10.6 units|
|Cellaring Potential||Drink through until 2031|
|Allergen Information||Contains Sulphites|
16 months, French & European oak, 26% new