Mount Veeder Winery
2006 Mount Veeder Reserve
California: Mount Veeder (Napa)
What we say
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Mission Codename: Ethos Elevated
Operative: Agent Red
Objective: Send Agent Red to the mountain vineyards of the Atlas Peak Winery. Choose a bold, delicious Cabernet Sauvignon for our deserving Operatives.
Mission Status: Accomplished!
Current Winery: Mount Veeder Winery
Wine Subject: 2006 Reserve Red – Napa Valley – Mount Veeder
Winemaker: Janet Myers
Backgrounder: Known for its ultra-premium Bordeaux varietal blends, Mount Veeder Winery takes the greatest care in tending its high-elevation fruit – leading to the creation of some rather extraordinary wines.
Mt. Veeder, located on the eastern slopes of the Mayacamas range has a climate that is cooler than the valley floor below. This climate and the more difficult (less fertile) volcanic mountain soil influence the flavors of the wines from this region. Best known for Cabernet Sauvignon, the region also produces Cabernet Franc and Chardonnay. The premium vineyards of the Mt. Veeder appellation produce grapes of exceptional character, density and intensity.
Today’s 2006 Reserve Red is a prefect blending of 86% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Malbec, 4% Petite Verdot, 2% Merlot, and 1% Cabernet Franc.
Wine Spies Tasting Profile:
Look – Darkest garnet, with a deepening, inky core. Color is evenly concentrated, right out to the thin band of pure ruby at the rim of the glass. After spinning the wine, skinny, wine-stained tears rush quickly down the inside of the glass.
Smell – Layered with sweet blackberry and spiced black cherry that leap from the glass. Just beneath these, additional aromas of blueberry, plum, dried dark flower petals, dark chocolate, bramble and soft cedar round out the complex nose.
Feel – Soft and cool at first, then immediately grippy and textured as the wine settles onto the mid-palate. Tannins are big, but so evenly integrated that the effect is plush, rather than coarse. Bright acids add balance and help to drive flavors to the far corners of the palate.
Taste – Rich and deep, with complex layers of dark fruit, sweet spice and earthen elements. Dark stone fruit, bramble, blackberry, cocoa powder and European black licorice lead the way. These are joined, closely, by cedar, subtle dark spice, black pepper, darkly toasted oak and chalky minerals.
Finish – Ultra-long, mouthwatering and delicious, with long-lingering fruit that starts dark and then goes more sweet then tart and sweetly spicy. At the very end, a mineral-rich dryness persists, remind you to take another flavorful sip.
Conclusion – Fantastic! I could end my review right there. Rich, delicious, aromatic, lush and really complex, this wine gets our heartiest recommendation. Be sure to decant for at least 30 minutes, to unleash fuller, juicier and more authentic fruit flavors. This wine is dark, to be sure, but bright fruit at the mid and back palate really bring balance. Enjoy this wine all on its own, or really make it sing by pairing it with a juicy grilled steak. Drinking just beautifully now, be sure to cellar a couple of bottles of this age-worthy wine for a few more years.
Winemaker, Janet Myers, is especially busy this time of year, and she was unable to sit with us for an interview.
Wine Spies Vineyard Check:
The location of the Mt. Veeder Appellation in Napa can be seen in this satellite photo.
What the winery says
About This Wine:
Deep ruby. Full aroma of ripe berry fruit, plum, cassis, and mountain bay, with sweet notes of vanilla and mocha. Rich and complex. Intense flavors of dark plum, blackberry, cocoa, and cassis fill the palate. Densely structured, very full-bodied and richly textured with good depth and complexity. Expressive blackcurrant, sage, violets, and mocha linger on the long finish.
About The Winery:
“Mount Veeder is a magical place—a rare and beautiful spot where vines cling to the steep hillsides, producing tiny, concentrated berries that give our wines their big, bold, brambly fruit character.” — Janet Myers, Winemaker
The philosophy at Mount Veeder Winery is that each of our wines has its own remarkable way of expressing the mountain soil from which it was born. We believe that great wines are a reflection of their terroir—the combination of soil, topography, microclimate and people—and we believe that excellent grapes handled with minimal processing have the potential to produce the greatest wines.
Mount Veeder Winery was the first vineyard in Napa Valley planted to all five of the grape varieties used in a classic Bordeaux blend. We feel that blending is the key to crafting the most complete, balanced wine and enhancing the inherent characteristics of each variety. The ultimate goal is the creation of a rich, seamless wine.
Mount Veeder Winery was one born from the hard work and dedication of Michael and Arlene Bernstein. The Bernsteins first discovered the rugged property in the early 1960s and later bought it as a rustic retreat. In the ensuing years they transformed it into an enviable vineyard, almost by accident. After farming the property’s prune orchard for the first few years, a farmhand who lived on the property presented the Bernsteins with a bundle of cast-off grapevine cuttings. Michael stuck the unrooted cuttings into the ground and never gave them a drop of water. Miraculously, of the 60 cuttings planted, 58 lived. Michael turned his full attention to the vines and built his land into a thriving vineyard, ultimately making history as the first vintner in Napa Valley to plant one property to all five of the classic Bordeaux varieties.
The debut wine from Mount Veeder Winery was the 1973 Cabernet Sauvignon. Since that first vintage, Mount Veeder Winery has expanded to three vineyard ranches nestled high in the Mayacamas Mountains and continues to produce powerful, bold wines that are a true expression of this unique wine-growing region.
Wine Type: Red Wine
Varietal: Bordeaux Red Blend – 86% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Malbec, 4% Petite Verdot, 2% Merlot, and 1% Cabernet Franc
Appellation: Napa Valley
Aging: 24 months in French Oak