Mt. Veeder is known for producing fruit with intense tannins that result in age-worthy wines of distinction. Brighter red fruit led by wild mountain raspberry, bright cherry and darker fruits including blackberry are framed with oak spice, vanilla and caramel from the new oak. Wild yet refined, the grippy tannins give way to a wine with great structure and balance, solid acidity and a vibrant finish that lingers. This will continue to evolve and reveal itself over the next decade.
The Yates Family vineyard is found moderately high, just above the town of Napa, planted at an elevation of 1,100 feet. Mt. Veeder is one of Napa’s most unique AVAs, the southernmost and coolest growing region, known for an extended growing season and volcanic soils with a variety of micro climates. The vineyard is found at the end of Redwood Road, near the Archer Taylor Preserve managed by the Land Trust of Napa Valley. Vineyards were first planted here in the 1860s.
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 before final sorting in an optical sorter, selecting only the highest quality fruit for fermentation in a combination of concrete and stainless vessels. The concrete tanks, relatively new to the winery, offered a significant purity of expression. Fruit was allowed to ferment for up to 15 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 100% new French oak from COF toasted medium/medium plus from a mix of coopers including Gamba, Remond, Taransaud, Allary and Quintessence.