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. He 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.
"This small-production wine shows a very fine tannin texture that gives definition and brightness. There are lavender and violet aromas and flavors to the dark fruits. Full-bodied, poised and focused. Knows who it is. Drink in 2020." - James Suckling, May 2018
The 2014 Sleeping Lady Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon is an opulent style wine with vivid aromas of blackberry, cassis and mulberry fruit. The nose leads to an intense flavor profile offering bright juicy fruit, mocha and baking spice. This wine is dense with smooth, well-integrated tannins and a good line of acidity which leaves the wine lingering on the finish.
2014 was a beautiful vintage for the Napa Valley along the lines of the recent outstanding vintages of 2012 and 2013. Although California's continued drought brought another dry winter, the growing season started with a warm, dry spring and relatively early bud break. Summer temperatures remained mild and consistent with even, warm temperatures throughout. The overall quality and expressive fruit characteristics make this an outstanding vintage. Grapes for the 2014 Sleeping Lady Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon were harvested on October 13 and 14.
This single-vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon comes from the meticulously farmed Sleeping Lady Vineyard located in the Yountville AVA of the Napa Valley. The Sleeping Lady Vineyard, on the west bench of Yountville sitting up against the Mayacamas Mountains, is named for the distinctive foothills behind the property that look like a woman laying on her side. The pristine vineyard of just over 50 acres has six clones of Cabernet Sauvignon grown on it; Sterling Vineyards winemaker Harry Hansen works with three of these clones (2, 22 and 30).
After being hand-harvested and hand-sorted upon arrival at the winery, the grapes were fermented on the skins for 12 to 20 days. The wine was then gently pressed, racked and aged for 19 months in 100% French oak (90% new). Winemaker Harry Hansen made just 10 barrels of this beautifully expressive Cabernet Sauvignon.
Director of Winemaking Harry Hansen was raised in nearby Sonoma County. “One of my earliest memories of wine was the gallon jug of red wine that we always had at home. I would go with my father to a local winery, maybe in Kenwood or Healdsburg, to refill that jug and chit-chat with the winery proprietors. The aromas of those wines were always something attractive, somehow mysterious, but always memorable.”
Harry joined Sterling Vineyards and relocated to Napa Valley just before the 2011 Harvest. “The opportunity to join such a respected Napa Valley winery is exciting and a fantastic next step in my winemaking career. Sterling Vineyards is making some wonderful wines, and I look forward to taking that next step up in quality and reputation.”