2016 Rutherford Hillside Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon

2016 Rutherford Hillside Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon

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Tucked behind our old family home on the northwestern edge of the Rutherford appellation is our Hillside Reserve Vineyard. This benchland site sweeps dramatically up the hillside, bordering an ancient creek and wrapping around the natural springs that give our winery its name. The Hillside Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, sourced from Block J on the vineyard’s steep slope, was the first Cabernet we chose to bottle on its own. The 2016 Rutherford Hillside Reserve is a bold, ripe and concentrated wine exhibiting a veritable cornucopia of red, blue and black fruits – red plum, wild blueberry, ripe blackberry and warm cassis play equal roles. Secondary flavors of wild sage, wood smoke and chaparral appear on the mid-palate along with plush notes of vanilla and brown spice from aging in predominantly French oak barrels. This is a highly polished Cabernet, full-bodied and extremely well balanced, with firm yet silky tannins that promise both immediate drinking pleasure and long term aging potential.

All the Facts

Appellation:Rutherford, Napa Valley
Varietal:100% Cabernet Sauvignon
Cases Produced:425
Aging:19 months in French (90%) and American (10%) oak barrels (47% new)
Enjoyability:Drink now or cellar. Pull the cork until 2036 for optimum enjoyment.

On the Vine

An early bud break followed by warm weather and spring rains brought a rapid start to an ideal 2016 growing season, one with beautiful weather from bloom, to berry set, to veraison and harvest in our Napa Valley estate vineyards. Our winemaker and vineyard managers – Paul Steinauer and Pat and Sean Garvey - worked closely together as the season progressed to ensure grapes ripened uniformly, adjusting vine canopies, thinning fruit and keeping a close eye on soil moisture. The harvest began in mid-August and wrapped up by mid-October, just ahead of the valley’s first significant fall rainstorm.

91 points
Wine Spectator
"A ripe, polished, hedonistic version, with a mocha frame around creamed plum, boysenberry and açaí berry flavors. The rich, fleshy finish lets the fruit play out, while the mocha edge lingers prominently. Drink now through 2027."
—James Molesworth, October 2019 Issue
97 points
Blue Lifestyle
"Rich ruby color; lush chocolate nose; satiny texture, creamy plum and lovely toasty vanilla oak; tangy acidity and notes of chocolate and subtle spice; long and complete."
Read more. April 2019
93 points
James Suckling
"Super rich, bold, concentrated cabernet with a ripe blackberry and blueberry core that delivers a very long, polished and regal style. Boldly delicious cabernet. Try from 2020." November 2018
91+ points
The Wine Advocate
The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Rutherford Hillside Reserve is deep purple-black in color with notes of warm cassis, red plum compote, redcurrant jelly and wild blueberries with touches of underbrush, garrigue, wild sage and wood smoke. The palate is full-bodied, firm and chewy with mouth-filling black fruits and loads of red berry accents, finishing long and grippy.
" October 2018