When the founding fathers of the Napa Valley carved out new sub-AVAs (American Viticultural Areas) in the 1980s, Soda Canyon Ranch was not yet on anyone’s map. The vineyard is neighbored to the northwest and west by the winegrowing districts of Stags Leap District and Oak Knoll District, respectively, which were among the early pioneers of California Cabernet Sauvignon to attain global fame. To the northeast and southeast—and further off the beaten path—were Atlas Peak and Coombsville, thought to be the next frontiers for the emerging wine-producing region.
With richness and depth of flavor, the 2018 Timeless Napa Valley is the embodiment of patience and attention to detail. Decades of experience at Soda Canyon Ranch allow winemaker Nate Weis and team to highlight the individual merits of each block. Combining the strongest lots from each resulted in a refined and harmonious bottling.
In 2018, the diurnal shift at Soda Canyon Ranch produced a darker, lusher fruit profile of Cabernet Sauvignon. Simultaneously, the overnight recovery periods resulted in expressive and refined Merlot, giving the wine a pleasant profile of bright, red fruit. With an extended harvest window, the signature, plush density and structure of Petit Verdot is also prevalent in the final blend. Cabernet Franc thrived in 2018 with its predilection for the cooler soils and the climate of blocks 5, 6, 16, 20 and 21—areas we call the Transition Zone and Hardpan Alley. The variety’s floral and tobacco-like aromatics are accentuated, and its more aggressive nature for back-end tannins tamed.
Once blended, the 2018 vintage rested in French oak barrels for 16 months, developing flavors of vanilla and baking spice. Velvety tannins dance across the palate of bright and lingering cassis. With a smooth finish, this is a comforting wine of elegance and depth—a sophisticated expression of the sedate summer.
This is a little old-school and shows lots of dark berry, chocolate and dried fruit. It’s full, dense and layered with fleshly sensibility. Velvety texture.
-James Suckling 93 Points
River Road Ranch is a 115-acre jewel in the heart of the Russian River Valley AVA. Chardonnay vines thrive in well-drained soils, shrouded with fog cooled nights, ideal growing conditions. The grapes for this wine came from two blocks of twelve and fifteen-year-old vines, planted with clones #4, 95, and 2A-Wente.
Bottled poetry is the description of Trione Chardonnay. Burgundian in style of both nose and palate. Rich and inviting, this wine offers a complex mix of toasty baguette, warm melted brie; silky but with the structure demonstrating the aging potential. The wine is tasting great now but will be awesome for the next 5-7 years.
Trione Pinot Noir River Road Ranch is made from 100 percent Pinot Noir.
River Road Ranch encompasses 115 acres in the heart of the Russian River Valley appellation. Located on the western bench of the Santa Rosa Plain, the vineyard thrives in well-drained soils. The region's fog-cooled nights are ideal for this varietal.
This Pinot Noir presents aromas of dark cherry, exotic spice, green tea and a slight earthiness we call forest floor. The wine is silky on the palate, beautifully balanced, with a long finish. The Pinot Noir's firm structure suggests excellent aging potential, 10-15 years.
We made this Pinot Noir in small lots, using traditional techniques —fermenting in open-top tanks and hand-plunging the caps during primary fermentation. To accentuate the outstanding fruit flavors, we added 20% whole clusters to the each fermenter. The Pinot Noir aged twelve months in French oak barrels (40% new) from coopers Meyrieux Traditional House and Remond.
"A savory and mossy pinot noir with racy berries, licorice and ash. Some coca cola, too. This is deep and decadent with some dried roses and wet earth on the palate and some darker fruit and herbs in the lengthy finish. Drink or hold."
- James Suckling (June 2022), 92 pts
Waterstone Merlot Napa Valley is 100 percent Merlot
Sweet cherry, ripe plum, hints of vanilla and overtones of anise and aged leather appear in the aroma. On the palate, this generous wine features cherry, plum and blackberry fruit with supple tannins and a lingering finish.
Avignonesi Desiderio Merlot Toscana IGT is made from Merlot.
Avignonesi Desiderio Merlot has an explosive olfactory impact. The wide aromatic bouquet ranges from cherry and plum jam to notes of black tea, rhubarb and graphite, with small final notes of fermented tobacco. The entrance is bursting. The palate is invested by the imposing and typical structure of Tuscan Merlot, enveloping and warm. Tastefully in symbiosis with the olfactory notes, the dense and linear tannin accompanies hints of coconut and black pepper in retrolfaction.
James Suckling 94 Points
Deep garnet in color, the 2018 Pennino Zinfandel is immediately appealing, with aromas of warm strawberry-rhubarb pie, clove, and ripe boysenberry. In the mouth, the wine is dense, with good weight and fine, rounded tannins. Refreshing acidity and sweet oak support the elongated finish.
The Opus One 2018 offers profuse aromas of blackberry, cassis, and black cherry. Elegant notes of violets, white pepper and rose petals follow and together they deliver a very seductive bouquet. The seamlessly layered flavors build to a crescendo of fresh and juicy black-fruit, accented with hints of orange zest, licorice and dark chocolate. Beautifully balanced, the smooth round tannins and fresh acidity combine to create a soft, creamy mouthfeel and extend the flavors into a long persistent finish.
Blend: 84% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Petit Verdot, 5% Merlot, 4% Cabernet Franc, 1% Malbec
Extremely perfumed and floral with lavender, lilacs and violets to the sweet, ripe berries, such as blackberries and blackcurrants. Some slate and graphite, too. It’s full-bodied, yet ever so balanced and refined, with super fine tannins that last for minutes. Fresh herbs, such as bay leaf and lemon grass highlight the dark fruit. The quality of tannin is exquisite with wonderful polish and refinement. Lasts for minutes. So wonderful to taste now, but better after 2026.
99 Points James Suckling
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate 98 Points
Collemattoni takes its name from the farmhouse, which, over time, has become the trademark of our winery and of our wines. The farmhouse dates back to at least 1672, year in which it is registered in the parish archives as a family home. Collemattoni is located on a hill top on the south side of the municipal area of Montalcino, just a short distance from the village of Sant’Angelo in Colle.
At the beginning of 1980, Adon Bucci ( father of Marcello Bucci) bought the land and the farm house from the Church and the Bucci family started to produce wine. The 1988 has been the first vintage of Collemattoni Brunello di Montalcino.
Azienda Agricola Collemattoni owns 12 hectares:
7.5 hectares of Sangiovese grown in the villages of Collemattoni (2.5ha), Fontelontano (0.5ha), Sesta (2.70ha) and Cava (1.80ha).
The 4.5ha of Merlot, Canaiolo, Colorino and Trebbiano are all grown in the village of Orcia.
The age of the vines ranges between 5 years old for the youngest and 18 years old for the oldest vineyards.
The have been using organic farming methods for several years and the 2016 vintage will bear the organic certification.
Blind Justice Beckstoffer To Kalon Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon is made from 76% Cabernet Sauvignon and 24% Cabernet Franc.
Blind Justice is a pure expression of Napa Cabernet exclusively from Beckstoffer’s ‘To-Kalon’ vineyard. The true heart of the famed Oakville appellation, this vineyard highlights the decadent essence of Napa Cabernet to perfection, with vines rooted in loamy alluvial soil that adds depth, nuance, and structure. An absolute stunner, and the flagship of the Justice offerings, this is the wine that epitomizes the adventurous and pioneering soul of the Napa Valley.
Baking spices like clove and cocoa jump out of the glass and are then met with aromas of ripe black cherry and vanilla. The cherry shows up again on the palate along with other dark red and purple fruits. This wine lingers for days with a rich core and luscious mouthfeel.
The 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Blind Justice Beckstoffer To Kalon Vineyard is straight-up terrific. Based on 76% Cabernet Sauvignon and 24% Cabernet Franc from a handful of blocks in this great site in Oakville, aged 20 months in 78% new oak, it has a beautiful cassis, wildflower, and sappy herb-driven bouquet as well as a rich yet seamless style on the palate. This full-bodied beauty pairs richness and elegance perfectly, has ripe tannins, terrific balance, and is going to evolve for two decades.
-Jeb Dunnuck 97 Points
Avatar Malbec is 100% Malbec.
Aged in 100% French Oak barrels for 4 months and then 6 months in the bottle beofre release
Presents a vibrant red color with glints of bordeaux. Great aromatic intensity. It expresses in a very fresh way, with red fruits and a remarkable sweetness. In the mouth it’s balanced with round and sweet tannins, rich and with a marked acidity.
Coming from Agrelo district.
Average of the vines is 25 years old.
Soil type: Alluvial and sandy soils with a big amount of rocks just besides the Mendoza river. This is one of the most prestigious terroirs in Argentina.
Winemaking: Crushing, destemming and maceration pre-fermentative at 11ºC for 24 hours. Alcoholic fermentation in tanks. 4 weeks of skin contact maceration. Aged in French oak barrels for 4 months, Malolactic fermentation in contact with fine lees.
Wine was slightly filtered before bottling.