Vintage 2010 – Napa Valley In the cellar, winemakers delighted, undeterred by challenges of Mother Nature “In some years winegrowers must feel like baseball players in the batting cage swinging at whatever Mother Nature throws their way, and for vintage 2010 in California’s renowned Napa Valley this was the case. Rainfall returned after three dry years, pushed bud break, flowering and fruit set back by at least two weeks at the front end of the growing season, and due to the cloud cover, there was no frost damage in 2010. The summer brought cooler than normal temperatures, where constant vigilance and rigorous canopy management averted mildew or pest problems. The ten-day to two-week lag continued into a later than average veraison. Winegrowers were faced with a two-day heat spike into triple digits for the first time in the season, coinciding with the first day of harvest on August 24. With canopies thinned to adjust for the cooler season, grapes at various sites experienced some sunburn. The damage was variable site-to-site with many vineyards reporting no sunburned clusters at all. The relatively cool growing season coupled with the unexpected heat spikes in late summer resulted in a late and shortened harvest with lower yields. Vintners were excited about what they were tasting from the vineyards– concentrated flavors that will materialize into elegant, structured wines, almost European in style. Cooler than average temperatures returned again in early September, but gave way to a welcome, warm and consistent Indian Summer that was just the ticket, bringing good flavor and color development across the board.” NV
The Vineyards (owned by Leroy & Patty Young) The Young Ridge Estate Vineyard is surrounded by two vineyard blocks of Cabernet Sauvignon. These blocks sit high on the ridge to the west of the town of Napa adjoining to Brown’s Valley. This area on the edge of the Carneros district is characterized by a long, moderately cool growing season sweetened by the breezes and lingering fog of the San Pablo Bay, temperatures in this American vinicultural area (AVA) are slightly cooler than Burgundy, yet slightly warmer than Champagne. As such, Carneros provides optimum conditions for the slow, even ripening of and perfect balance in Cabernet Sauvignon. 100% Cabernet planted in 1992
The Pope Valley Ranch (99 acres) was purchased in 1995. This block consists mostly of Cabernet Sauvignon (94%) but also has some Petite Verdot, Malbec, Cab Franc and Zinfandel. Hugo loam is the principle soil used to grow these vines. It is spring fed from Aetna Springs (Pope Valley Property) and was named after a nearby hot spring. The spring was so named by the owner of the Aetna Mines, John Lawley, when he discovered the spring in the 1880s. Elevation is at 771 feet. 60 acres planted.