Mission Codename One hundred thousand pounds
$275, $188, $200, $165, $209… just a smattering of prices for 2019s made under the hospices of ultra-talented consultant Jean Hoefliger.
This one? Released at $110 it sits at the floor of these pricing tiers. At 55% OFF and under $50 it just fell through the basement.
He also racks up huge scores like it’s nothing. 94 POINTS on this mountain-grown beast.
His magic is so in demand that he comes with his own (tech sheet!) worth a read if you want to see just how prolific his span of work is.
And then there’s this.
A brand-new release from a much sought-after winery and their brilliant day-to-day winemaker Abby Watt. A first for us. And we could only get our hands on a few cases, so you’d be wise to jump on it.
Chris Medlock James and Ames Morison are college best friends who left the hustle of Manhattan for the rolling hills of Sonoma. They knew what they wanted from the very beginning. Driving around Chalk Hill, their vision was realized at Bell Mountain Ranch, that charming spot where Russian River Valley meets Alexander Valley. Ames is the winemaking force here, reaching for hillside Cabernet Sauvignon and other Bordeaux varieties that exude power without excess. To that end, they have taken organic viticulture and sustainability to a whole new level.
The press came soon after their launch when Food & Wine declared Nirvana in Sonoma! announcing that “up on Bell Mountain, Medlock Ames winery produces amazing wines in a utopian setting.”
The story here goes that when Chris and Ames arrived at Bell Mountain, the natural vineyard terraces that wrapped the steep hillsides were in ruins. To restore them, and help the vines bounce back, they had to move massive boulders by hand, one by one, as a family project. The 50 TONS worth of rock they had to move - from those very same hillsides blocks picked for it - name this wine, symbolizing the most “structured and muscular” barrels that make up their reserve program.
Power and polish are on full display here. Deep ruby-purple colored, with a youthful, perfumed nose of black fruits, exotic woods, and charred herbs. It fills the full-bodied palate with vibrant crushed blackberries, blackcurrants, cocoa powder, candied violets, and dusted minerals. Smooth, ripe tannins and refreshing acidity frame this muscular wine and carry into a long, layered finish. Built for the long haul and will surely reward with cellaring, then again, it’s so gorgeous today with a good decant, so why wait?
Very little of this one on a quiet Sunday. Get it while it’s here!
94 Points – Wine Enthusiast
“This is a showcase vintage for this wine, supple in plum and mocha flavors, with well-integrated tannin and oak. Lengthy and muscular, with enduring power, it shows appealing mountain-like intensity.”
What the Winery Says
2019 'Fifty Tons' Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
- Consulting Winemaker
- Jean Hoefliger
- Abby Watt
- 94% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3.5% Malbec, 2.5% Merlot
- Alexander Valley, Sonoma County
- Bell Mountain Vineyard
- Harvest date
- October 7-25, 2019
- Bottling date
- July 28, 2021
- 22 months
- 18% new French oak