2009 Silencieux Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley
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91 Points - The Wine Advocate, December 23, 2011
"A big, juicy wine bursting with dark plums, black cherries, licorice and spices. Despite the opulent, in your face style, the wine possesses gorgeous overall balance. The Silencieux is anything but quiet. It should drink beautifully for a number of years."
Our family has farmed Cabernet Sauvignon in the Napa Valley for nearly a half-century. Over the many years we have carefully chosen vineyard sources that speak for themselves through the quality of fruit they produce. This wine opens with scents of blackberries, cassis, licorice and coffee that lead to a concentrated, full-bodied wine that showcases great length on the palate. Approachable upon release, and cellar worthy in proper aging conditions, fans of our Bone Ash Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon and our Family Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon will love this wine for its fruit concentration, beautiful complexity and structure. This is the second vintage of Silenieux (see-lance-you, Silent One) Cabernet Sauvignon and it is a blockbuster effort. This is largely the result of our vineyard selection for this year’s release.
In The Vineyard
19 tons of pristine Cabernet Sauvignon grapes from four vineyard locations were harvested to produce the 2009 vintage. Each vineyard yielded an average of 1.2 to 1.6 tons per acre, giving us densely concentrated color and flavor.
Harvest began October 16 and finished October 31.
Venge’s Calistoga Estate “Bone Ash Vineyard”: This alluvial bench vineyard is in the warmest sector of the Napa Valley and is proving to be an ideal location for growing Cabernet Sauvignon. Now in their 23rd leaf, the vines are dry-farmed and sustainably-farmed and provide sweet cassis, rich red fruit flavors, and elegance to the structure of the wine.
H&H Vineyard, Mount Veeder, Eastern Hillside Exposure: This cool climate, hillside location is 10 degrees cooler than Saint Helena, and 15 degrees cooler than Calistoga, on average. It provides classic Cabernet varietal characteristics of mint, blackberry, and cassis, along with the necessary backbone and elegance we look for in our age-worthy Cabernets.
One Vineyard, The Saint Helena Gravel Bed: This small vineyard stands in an ideal formation of gravelly loam that drains to the Napa River. Bold, tannic, and packed with dark red fruit, it adds a perfect splash of body and color.
Narsai David Vineyard, Conn Valley: Located East of the town of Saint Helena, the elevations in this area range from 300 to 1200 feet above the valley floor. The terrain is rugged, dry, and hot in the summer months, making for perfect growing conditions to achieve optimum ripeness, resulting in a plush, dark, brooding element to the core of the blend.
In The Cellar
The fruit was destemmed into small stainless steel fermentors and time on skins lasted 14 to 21 days. The fruit was then lightly pressed, keeping “free run” and “press” fractions separate and aged in a combination new (40%) and used French Oak barrels for 22 months. While we do add yeast to finish primary fermentation, we allow the indigenous malolactic bacteria to complete the secondary fermentation.
100% Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
0.69 g/100mL T.A., 3.43 pH, 14.8% Alc. Bottled on August 23, 2011. 1025 Cases Produced
Suggested Retail Price: $48 per bottle