Ardente Estate Winery
2007 Atlas Peak Napa Grande Reserve Cabernet
California: Napa Valley: Atlas Peak
Today’s Ardente Estate Winery 2007 Atlas Peak Napa Valley Grande Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon is a fantastic wine - especially at today’s special WIA 2013 price. This wine was named “Best of Show” at Premiere Napa Valley, a highly influential trade sampling and charity auction that attracts the finest wines from the best wineries.
This wonderful 2007 (Robert Parker gave this important vintage a 96 point score, and Wine Spectator issued a 99 point score) is still approaching its peak - and there is plenty of life left in it. On opening, this mountain Cabernet exudes wonderful fruit on the nose. As it breathes, it unravels to reveal even more elegant fruit, earth and spice. On the palate, the wine is soft and elegant. Plush tannins deliver fruit compote and earthy character to the far corners of the palate.
2007 Vintage Update: Wine Spectator recently awarded the 2007 Napa Valley vintage an astounding 99 point score, declaring: “With near-perfect growing conditions and a small crop, the grapes [in 2007] reached ideal ripeness, and the wines show uncommon richness and complexity, a lush texture and impeccable balance.” This rating is the highest since 1997, leading Zachys to say, “If you love Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon and its blends from Napa Valley…NOW is the time to load up before these last remaining wines disappear! The Wine Advocate’s final reviews on late releasing 2007s are due out this December but don’t expect these wines to be still available then. Load up now and secure some of the most complex Napa Valley Cabernets in the past decade or more!”
Nearly perfectly diffuse dark scarlet at its core, transitioning and mellowing into a lighter ruby edge.
After benefiting from decanting, this wine opens up beautifully, leading with notes of stewed plum, blackberry, and black currant. These dark fruit notes are wonderfully balanced against notes of rich mahogany, sweet tobacco, dried rose petal, and lilac blossom.
Elegant and robust, with flavors reminiscent of the nose, this wine is a fantastic blend of fruit, earth, and spice. A rich, dark fruit compote of black cherry and blueberry overlays a solid foundation of sweet cedar, sandalwood, fall forest floor, chocolate covered espresso bean, and subtle notes of dark spice.
This refined, classic Napa Valley Cabernet is truly a beautiful wine, with the dark fruit trailing off slowly, gradually drying the palate from the center outward, and leading to an eminently satisfying finale.
We recommend serving this bold red wine with a meal of braised beef short ribs, rich pureed potatoes and sauteed swiss chard.
What the Winery Says
The wine comes from my vineyard on Atlas Peak, where we practice sustainable agricultural practices. It is a dark, ruby red wine of extraordinary complexity. The uniqueness of this wine can be attributed to the conditions found only on Atlas Peak, including the rich volcanic soil indigenous to this part of the Napa Valley and a distinctive microclimate located at an altitude of 1500 Feet.
The 2007 vintage aged in small French oak barrels for 30 months and another 24 months in the bottle. The result is a wine with an intense yet delicate nose, rich, satisfying mouth feel, a pleasant finish with just the right amount of tannin, and the promise of a long aging.
- Derek Irwin
- Atlas Peak, Napa Valley, California
- Varietal Composition
- 90% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Merlot, 2% Cabernet Franc
- 30 months in French oak, 40% new
About the Winery
Ardente Estate Winery is a family-owned estate organized in the manner of a traditional European chateau. The winery and the vineyard are located on the estate in the quiet hills of Atlas Peak, at an altitude of 1500 feet just eight miles from the city of Napa. The rocky, volcanic terrain and arid climate denigrate the vines, forcing them to work harder and produce more concentrated fruit. The harvest commence most years in late October, giving the grapes a long hang-time, resulting in well ripened and mature fruit.
Winemaker Derek Irwin
After graduating from the University of California at Davis, Derek Irwin learned the ropes at Cosentino Winery and subsequently at Bouchaine Vineyards. In the late 1990’s he moved to Viansa Winery and soon led their wine programs as Winemaker and Vineyard Manager .
In 2004, Derek started in a new direction and formed Madura Consulting and Piola Wines. Within these two companies, Derek uses his extraordinary knowledge and infinite passion to produce tremendous wines for his clients in the Sierra Foothills, Napa, and Sonoma as well as abroad.