2012 Chateau Montelena Cabernet Sauvignon Estate

Year: 2012
Appellation: Calistoga, Napa Valley
Country: USA - California
Wine Advocate: 93
Vinous Media: 93+
Red Wine
Alcohol by Volume: 13.8%
Price :


"From bottle a solid 93. Surprisingly lush and charming for a young Montelena, the 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate has a deep ruby/purple color, with earthy, black cherry and blackcurrants. The wine has very ripe tannins, and is medium to full-bodied with outstanding purity and balance. Most Montelena estate Cabernets have traditionally required patience, but this one is set for drinking now and over the next 20 years." (WA)

"The 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate is one of the more open-knit, young Cabernets I can remember tasting at Montelena. Crushed flowers, sweet tobacco, mint, red cherries and plums are some of the signatures. Resonant and silky, the 2012 will drink well pretty much upon release, although today it comes across as less expressive than it was last year. Even so, there is plenty of vintage 2012 radiance and suppleness throughout." (VM)

Winery Notes:
Extraordinarily rich notes of dried cherry, cocoa, muddled mint, and blackberry. As the wine continues to breathe, one by one subtle hints of tobacco, cedar, and perfume emerge with patience.

There is considerable depth on the palate as fresh, tart raspberries contrast the rocky, earth undertones, so emblematic of our Estate, leading to a texture that is at once austere, awaiting further time in bottle, and voluptuous.

After two years in oak, the tannins are wonderfully integrated with just enough toast to seamlessly transition to blueberry, cassis, and mocha on the finish.

Vintage Weather:
2012 was one of those vintages that allowed us to express what makes the Montelena Estate a rarity, even in the Napa Valley. Our porous alluvial soils and craggy volcanics soaked up the late spring rains, which, coupled with copious sunshine and moderate temperatures, set the stage for an ideal growing season. By August, as most of the Valley dealt with triple digit highs, reliable northerly breezes materialized by mid-afternoon as the substantial heat inland drew in ocean air from the Pacific, which thundered down Mt. St. Helena to cool our Estate. In short, the fruit from this vintage experienced the best of what this vineyard can offer, allowing us to craft a wine of elegance, structure, and finesse.