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2018 Sterling Vineyards Platinum Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

2018 Sterling Vineyards Platinum Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

2018 Sterling Vineyards Platinum Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

Tasting Notes

The 2018 Sterling Platinum is a wine designed to bring a singular thought to life: great wines come from great vineyards, and never so much as when the winemaking and winegrowing teams work hand in hand to carefully nurture the finest fruit toward a well-rewarded harvest. In this vintage, Platinum exhibits a bold yet balanced fruit expression, polished tannins and a plush texture that are the signature aspects of this rich, full-bodied wine. A near perfect vintage, showing bright and fragrant aromas and flavors of red and dark fruit, such as blackberry, raspberry, and black cherry, balanced by notes of cocoa powder, tea leaf and a strong vanilla essence. A beautiful expression of Napa’s varied growing regions, perfectly blending together cabernet characters of mocha, cassis and vanilla spice with black pepper notes and a subtle minerality, leading to a long, persistent finish. This wine is concentrated and well-structured with firm tannins that will allow for years of cellaring, but that can also be enjoyed now.

Technical Information

Varietal Cabernet Sauvignon
Vintage 2018
Appellation Napa Valley
Alcohol % 14.9%
Enclosure Type Cork

Scores & Accolades

  • 95

    “Currant and blackberry aromas with flowers and light spices. Full-bodied and dense with soft, nicely chewy tannins and a long, flavorful finish. Very intense and beautiful. One of the best Platinums I have tasted. Drinkable now, but will be so much better in 2024.” - James Suckling, August 2021


Fruit was gently harvested in the early morning hours and optically sorted, selecting only the highest quality fruit for fermentation in concrete, French oak, and stainless-steel vessels. 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 20 months in a combination of 75% French, 14% American and 11% Hungarian oak (71% new). Barrels are toasted medium/medium plus from a mix of coopers including Gamba, Remond, Taransaud, Allary, and Quintessence. Individual barrels are aged separately and are tasted frequently before the final selection of only the most compelling candidates for Platinum.


A near perfect season, welcomed after several tense vintages, began with abundant February rains followed by drying sun and weather that allowed for even flowering and bud break. The slightly later start was followed by consistently ideal weather. It turned a bit cool in August, mild in September, allowing fruit to evolve. Patience and careful attention to the vineyard was rewarded with fruit of excellent ripeness, well balanced tannins and complexity. Generally, normal to heavier fruit clusters were evident on the vine with great flavor intensity. On average, pick dates were two weeks later than normal.


Cabernet Sauvignon is the signature variety of the Napa Valley and the appellation excels in producing outstanding examples of this admired varietal. Napa Valley offers an ideal combination of topography, geology and climate, that enables Cabernet Sauvignon to reach optimum ripeness, balance and finesse. And within the valley, there are exceptional vineyards and sub-appellations that produce some of the finest expressions of this noble grape, truly Platinum worthy. For the 2018 vintage, our winemakers selected notable lots from vineyards spanning key Napa Valley growing regions, including Clairmore Vineyard in Napa Valley, Peterson Ranch and Diamond Mountain Ranch from Diamond Mountain, and Meigs Vineyard in Wooden Valley. Additionally, a small amount of Merlot, Malbec, and Petit Verdot came from Napa Valley.