2008 Quintessa Proprietary Red 375 ml

Year: 2008
Appellation: Napa Valley
Country: USA - California
Connoisseurs' Guide: 93
Red Wine
Alcohol by Volume: 14.2%
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Varietals: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Carmenere

"There is no big burst of fruit or towering wave of sweet oak to make this one an immediate turner of heads, but there is a real sense of sophistication at work here with plenty of depth and layering right from the start. The wine is at once both slightly supple and fairly firm in feel, and its vitality is hard to ignore. It teases with touches of toast and dusty earth spice while hewing to a very long line of optimally ripened currants, and it has all the right pieces in all the right places to grow famously for ten years or more. Reviewed: December 2011" (CG)

Winery Notes:
The 2008 growing season started out with the second of three consecutive dry winter seasons. Heavy January rains quenched the vines’ thirst but there was very little rain afterwards. March and April were almost rain free, with serious frosts. While the Quintessa’s vineyard received virtually no frost damage, the cold spring led to significantly fewer clusters on the vines, setting us up for a small yield. Variable weather during bloom limited fertilization of the berries, further reducing the crop. Late summer heat pushed flavors and ripening towards a moderate and dry harvest season. A small crop of concentrated, beautifully ripe fruit was the year’s reward. —Valeria Huneeus

The Wine Quintessa 2008 opens with fragrant plum and raspberry aromas with notes of cola, clove and white chocolate rounding out a delicate perfume. The wine enters the palate with sweet red currant and plum fruit flavors and a silky mouthfeel. As it coats the mouth, concentrated dark fruit flavors emerge with succulent balanced tannins, a subtle impression of well-integrated oak and sweetness from the rich, ripe fruit. This vintage will gain complexity in the bottle and age gracefully for a decade and more. —Winemaker Charles Thomas

The Quntessential Wine Estate Agustin and Valeria Huneeus developed Quintessa in 1990 to establish the property as one of the great red wine estates of the world. Valeria guided the 280-acre Rutherford vineyard with strict care for the soil and environment with a commitment to biodynamic and organic farming. The vineyard’s many microclimates, soil types, elevations, and exposures have been planted to a wide selection of rootstocks and clones, with Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and small plots of Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot and Carmenère. The winery’s eco-sensitive design integrates nature and winemaking, with a gravity flow process, naturally cooled winery and caves. Grapes are crushed on the winery roof and flow by gravity into the fermentation room below. After fermentation with native yeasts and extended maceration in stainless steel, French oak and concrete tanks, the wine ages in French oak barrels in the caves. Winemaker Charles Thomas brings over 20 years of winemaking experience in California to Quintessa’s next decade. He leads a winemaking team that includes international blending consultant Michel Rolland.