Palate

The 2013 vintage fostered deeply concentrated character, revealed in this wine’s highly saturated color, intense aromas and layered flavors. Double Plus epitomizes the complex character of Hewitt Vineyard with dark, brooding expression of wild blackberry, black plum, crème de cassis and mountain sage. Dark chocolate, caramel and affogato lace the aromas and persist through the dark-fruit finish. Sixty percent of the wine was fermented in small barrels, which rounded Hewitt Vineyard’s powerful tannins, thus enhancing the wine’s opulent texture and structure.

Growing Conditions

This wine is composed of the very finest barrels of wine made from Hewitt Vineyard. Typically, we select one or two barrels from at least two or three blocks of vines that consistently produce exceptional fruit. The wines show impeccable balance, supple tannins and highly concentrated flavors. Hewitt Vineyard’s sun exposure and slope promote ideal ripening, while the well-drained, alluvial soils of the Rutherford Bench allow deep rooting for complex flavors. Hewitt Vineyard was planted in 1992 and 1996 and budded to Cabernet Sauvignon clones 4, 7 and 8 for flavor diversity. Napa Valley’s 2013 vintage surpassed even the highly touted 2012 vintage in grape quality. A winter with very low rainfall was followed by a dry, warm spring and summer. These factors resulted in balanced vine canopies, good fruit set and small, concentrated grapes. Perfect weather throughout harvest gave us intense, beautifully balanced and expressive wines. A tremendous vintage!

Bottling

Bottled without fining.

Winemaking

We hand sorted the grapes on tables twice: first as clusters to remove any leaves or inferior fruit and then, after destemming, as individual grapes. This gentle process retained about 70 percent whole berries. We fermented 60 percent of the must in new French oak barrels to integrate tannins and enhance the plush texture of the wine. Three to five days of cold soaking and 45 days of total skin contact developed the rich varietal character.

Aging

We clarified the wine with four rackings during barrel aging.