Our Winery Exclusive wines allow us to create small lot offerings each vintage from unique vineyards where we can highlight both the varietal and the terroir of the region. These limited release wines are available only to guests of the winery and our wine club members, and often result in just a few barrels each vintage.
“Aromas of blackcurrant, espresso, cocoa and sage. Full-bodied with velvety tannins. A lovely combination of well-ripened fruit with sweet herbs and ground spice. Crushed stones, too. Delicious. Best after 2025.” - James Suckling, June 1, 2022
The deep ruby hues of the 2019 Calistoga Cabernet Sauvignon lead to pleasing aromas of bright red fruits and wild blackberries, sweetened with lingering notes of cinnamon. On the palate, bold flavors of bing cherry and black currant are beautifully layered and balanced by soft notes of vanilla, graham cracker, and caramel. The velvety, cocoa-dusted tannins, combined with evident toasted oak spice and plush, juicy acidity, lift the fruit for a lingering finish that is sure to please. Enjoy this wine today or over the next 5+ years.
After a damp late winter and spring, the 2019 California vintage started one to two weeks later than normal, followed by cool temperatures that allowed the grapes to mature gradually. Owing to the extended, cool growing season, wine grapes ripened slowly with full flavors and superb balance.
The fruit for Sterling Reserve Calistoga Cabernet Sauvignon was sourced from the well-drained, gravelly loam of vineyards in Calistoga, primarily Bear Flats Ranch and Frediani Ranch. In these northern valley floor vineyards, warm days cool down significantly at night by marine air and fog flowing in from Calistoga’s northwest corridor through the Chalk Hill Gap, as well as from nighttime flow of cold air from the steep slopes and canyons on both sides of the valley. These diurnal temperature swings slow down the ripening of the Cabernet Sauvignon to preserve freshness and exceptional balance in the fruit.
Fruit for the Reserve Calistoga Cabernet Sauvignon is harvested during the cool morning hours and optically sorted, selecting only the highest quality grapes for fermentation in stainless and French oak tanks. After fermentation with regular pump-overs to extract deep color and rich flavors, the wines were gently pressed and aged for 18 months in a combination of 84% French and 16% Hungarian oak (65% new). Promising vineyard blocks are aged separately and are tasted frequently before the final selection of only the most compelling candidate lots and individual barrels.
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