Always intense with plentiful tannins, Sleeping Lady Cabernet is a poster child for Napa Valley with great structure and beautiful complexity. Aromas and flavors of blue fruits led by blueberry and floral notes of violet and lavender. Balancing vanilla and a touch of oak spice frame a plush mouthfeel with a soft, lingering finish.
Looking toward the West Bench of Yountville, snug upon the Mayacamas mountain range, the distinct profile of a woman at rest on her side framed by distinctive foothills explains the name of this meticulously farmed vineyard. There are multiple clones of Cabernet Sauvignon planted in small blocks across 50 acres here, including several favorites of winemaker Harry Hansen, who often selects blocks with Clone 2, known for small clusters and small, intensely flavored berries with a history in Napa and Sonoma dating to the 1880s, aromatic Clone 22 and Clone 30, with local roots in the Stags Leap District from the See Ranch.
Winter rains helped signal the end of the immediate drought, but vineyards had grown stressed after multiple challenging years, resulting in modest yields for the season. A dry January was followed by a wet February, and temperatures remained mild, encouraging an early bud break to begin the growing season. Showers arrived in April, slowing the rapid advance of flowering and set. Early by historical standards, after harvest began picks moved at a leisurely pace as winemakers waited for ever more complex flavors to develop. The extended season helped balance acids and allowed layers of flavors to emerge.
Fruit was hand-harvested and hand-sorted, selecting only the highest quality fruit for fermentation in a combination of French oak tanks and stainless vessels. Fruit was allowed to ferment for up to 20 days with regular pump-overs to extract deep color and rich flavors. The wine was then gently pressed, racked and aged for 18 months in 90% new French oak from COF toasted medium/medium plus from a mix of coopers including Gamba, Remond, Taransaud, Allary and Quintessence.