Resting high atop Napa Valley’s exclusive Atlas Peak are the 15 acres of rocky, volcanic soil at an elevation of 1,350 feet, this vineyard exudes power and structure using cutting edge vineyard techniques that focus on the phenolic and flavorful cycles of the vine. Rob and Danny harness an organic natural approach to the vineyard that exemplifies the beauty and unique attributes of this site. Rob’s goal with the vineyard and winemaking has been to find the key to unlock the power, beauty and fruit of this volcanic Mountain vineyard. The 2013 vintage demonstrates that this quest has been met; however Rob promises more with the vintages to follow.
A long and warm growing season provided dark fruits while the sustained heat further softened the classically bold tannins of Cabernet Sauvignon. The warm season was balanced by the night time fog of the Napa Valley calming the ripening giving this wine a unique equilibrium between tannin and dark fruit with a full, rich background. The natural farming practices coupled with the new vinicultural techniques where the vines are thinned and tipped at specific times to accentuate higher and earlier phenolic development created yet another exceptional vintage for our family vineyard.
The fruit’s rich flavors, fine tannins and balanced acidity enabled Rob Mondavi Jr. to craft Cabernet Sauvignon with unmatched richness, elegance and harmony. After the grapes were hand-harvested and clusters selected, they were de-stemmed and crushed into small 800 gallons wood tanks for fermentation.
Aromatics of freshly muddled boysenberries, toasted vanilla and cardamom grace the opening volley.
The wine was aged in French oak barrels (68% new) for 20 months before being blended with 5% Merlot and 5% Cabernet Franc. The final blend shows harmony and flushness accenting notes of blackcurrant, boysenberries and subtle licorice notes. The texture and concentration are distinctly mountain Cabernet Sauvignon yet the balanced tannins and rich fruit demonstrate a deeper relationship with the vineyard that has unlocked flavors and depth beyond expectation.
The welcoming notes of this wine offer an integrated structure of approachable and full tannins with interlocked fruits that define the beauty of this vintage. The 2013 M by Michael Mondavi wine has a complete mouthfeel, which is complimented by elegant aromatics and superbly lengthy finish.