Wolf Family Vineyards
2018 Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc
California: Napa Valley: St. Helena
Call of the Musqué
You sending the wolf??
Yea, we’re sending the Wolf and it’s about to clean house and take the top spot in your collection of whites. It might even steal your wife (or husband) with all its seductive and stylish charm. How come? We’re talking the dangerously flirtatious palate teaser Musqué clone of Sauvignon Blanc at play here.
More on that later…
This tantalizing discovery comes from another micro winery in Napa, owned by Doug & Jane Wolf, who brought Mike Hirby on as winemaker. He kicked off his career near the top of the cult wine pyramid at Realm in 2002 and has a long history making wine for some ultra-premium projects like D.R. Stephens, while the “old guard” in charge here remains Karen Culler, one of the most respectable winemakers Robert Mondavi ever had, along with innumerable cult winery clients thereafter.
Absolutely gorgeous! So much tropical fruit. Candied lemon for days. White peach. Grapefruit, of course. And is that nectarine… or just ripening mango? A hint of some green herbs sprinkled on top. It’s dry but packed with such a nice balance of sweet/tangy fruit. Like a lemonhead candy or something. And it has a bright, zippy acidity cutting right through that weighty feel. The ideal white to op with regularity during the rest of the summer, heck even into the fall, but good luck practicing that restraint.
That oozing tropicality, the dizzying perfume of the Musqué clone is a real special and rare thing. With fabled aromatics, it dominates here along with Clone 1, dating back to the 1870s as THE original cuttings of Sauvignon Blanc brought to America from none other than Bordeaux’s legendary Château d’Yquem!
No wonder this drinks right up there with the TOP SBs of Napa such as neighboring Spottswoode, or even Eisele. We challenge you to find anything in this league under $20, not gonna happen…
At the well-deserved release price of $37 it’s a little out of our price range for an everyday Sauv B, but with our price a must have if you’re up for experiencing some top-shelf refreshment while soaking in some vitamin D for the next few months.
We scooped up every drop remaining of the 50 measly cases bottled. Sadly, it’s not enough to quench even our own thirst, so you get first dibs!
Last but not least, some noteworthy recognition…
Antonio Galloni - “This is a top-notch set of wines from Wolf Family Vineyards and winemaker Karen Culler. All of the wines are made from estate-grown fruit. Their Sauvignon Blanc is a striking wine… Everything about this wine is first-class. This is one of the most varietally expressive Sauvignon Blancs readers will find in Napa Valley. Culler is going for a fresh style here and tends to pick on the early side.”
Robert Parker - “These limited production cuvees are well-worth a search of the marketplace!”
Pale hay yellow with silver glimmers in the light
So much tropical fruit, candied lemon for days, white peach, grapefruit, is that nectarine… or just ripening mango?
A hint of some green herbs sprinkled on top, dry but packed with such a nice balance of sweet/tangy fruit
Bright, zippy acidity cutting right through that weighty feel, lasts on, and on, and on…
Seafood, and since you are saving so much, bust the budget on the most fresh and lavish
What the Winery Says
- Winemaker Emeritus
- Karen Culler
- Michael Hirby
- 100% Sauvignon Blanc
- Sauvignon Musqué, Clone 1
- St. Helena, Napa Valley
- 4 months on lees
- 21% neutral French acacia barrels
- 50 cases