Chateau Montelena Cabernet Sauvignon 2018

A$165.00

Availability
In stock
Volume
750ml
Region/Country
Napa Valley, United States
Rating
91 points

Vintages

2018

Description

Chateau Montelena is one of the most prominent Napa Valley wineries. It was directly associated with bringing international recognition to the California wine industry through the 1976 Judgment of Paris. Based in Calistoga, it is famous for its varietal Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay wines.

The history of Chateau Montelena began in 1882 when the site of the modern winery was bought by Alfred L. Tubbs. Tubbs built the eponymous chateau and created the A.L. Tubbs Winery in 1888, and by 1896 it was the seventh-largest wine producer in California. Prohibition in the 1920s saw the end of the winery, although the Tubbs family continued to grow and sell grapes.

When Prohibition was repealed in 1933 winemaking resumed, and A.L. Tubbs wines were unable to find their former success. Tubbs' grandson changed the name to Chateau Montelena, after the nearby Mount Saint Helena, but the winery was sold shortly afterwards. In 1972, Jim Barrett took over ownership and released the first vintage.

Chateau Montelena's real success came in the famous 1976 Judgment of Paris tasting, where its 1973 Chardonnay was deemed the best of a lineup of top wines from California and France. The top red wine, Stag's Leap Cabernet Sauvignon, was also from California.

The victory upset the French dominance of the wine industry, catapulting California producers onto the international stage, and opening the door for New World producers. The tasting was covered in Time magazine by George Taber, who went on to write a book about it titled Judgment of Paris, which in turn inspired the 2008 movie Bottle Shock. Despite its claim to fame with Chardonnay, the flagship wine of Chateau Montelena has actually been its Estate Cabernet Sauvignon. It was born in the early 1980s when the estate vines had matured enough to start producing quality fruit. After fermentation in stainless steel, it is barrel-aged in a series of tunnels and caves beneath the winery for up to 22 months.


Rating

Score
91 points
Reviewer
Decanter
View Reviewer
Review

Lavender, dates, raspberries, and shrubs on the nose. The palate is classically structured: high-toned, focused, and slightly rustic with a beaming core of acidity that continues through the finish. The tannins are subtle, making the wine overall enjoyable and ready to drink.

Specifications

Closure
Corked
Serving Temp.
16-18 °C
Alcohol
14.2%
Cellar until
Now - 2035
Food pairing
Rib-eye steak, mushroom & truffle tart

Tasting Profile

Nose
Dark garnet, nearly violet in the glass; the nose possesses an aromatic intensity that is irresistible. Fresh berries and dried cherries commingle with bergamot, lavender, mint, gunpowder, and sage without a single element dominating another.
Palate
The palate is fresh and dynamic, with cranberry, cola, and raspberry jam. The acidity is laser-focused, the spine pulling the layers of flavour 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 savoury with mushroom, black pepper, and cedar. The Merlot in the blend really shines here with rhubarb, cassis, and velvety softness

Chateau Montelena Cabernet Sauvignon 2018

Chateau Montelena Cabernet Sauvignon 2018
Bottle
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The Reserve Cellars. ABN 89621364994 Liquor License 196883. The Reserve Cellar supports the responsible service of alcohol. It is against the law to sell or supply alcohol to, or obtain alcohol on behalf of, a person under the age of 18 years. WARNING: Under the Liquor Act 1992, it is an offence to supply liquor to a person under the age of 18 years (Penalty exceeds $6,000). for a person under the age of 18 years to purchase or receive liquor (Penalty exceeds $500).

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