Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
The 2010 has a deep red robe, black highlights and a vibrant purple rim. Primary aromas of black cherry, tar, dark rose petal and truffle develop greater nuance as the wine breathes, revealing peppercorn, blackberry, red ginger and cardamom. On the palate, ripe plum and wild cherry fruit align with silky tannins and a rich velvety texture. The finish is full yet supple, with flavors reminiscent of a freshly pulled double espresso. The 2010 is wonderfully savory offering ripe black fruits, a long finish and quite a complex set of textures and flavors. Decant and enjoy or cellar for 15 to 20 years.
Blend: 71% Cabernet Sauvignon, 14% Cabernet Franc, 11% Petit Verdot, 4% Merlot
The Wine Advocate - "This has been an impressive, serious wine since the debut vintage, and Tim Mondavi's estate high on Pritchard Hill has fashioned a 2010 blend of 71% Cabernet Sauvignon, 14% Cabernet Franc, 11% Petit Verdot and 4% Merlot. Gorgeously ripe, intricate and nuanced, with aromas of spring flowers and red and black fruits, a stunning texture, sweet tannin, a full-bodied mouthfeel, and undeniable elegance and finesse, this complex beauty cascades over the palate without a hard edge to be found. It is a tribute to Mondavi-s long resume of skillful winemaking. Black currants, blueberries and a touch of raspberries are all compelling and persistent. Drink this gorgeous Napa red now and over the next 15+ years. "
Vinous / Antonio Galloni - "Graphite, crushed rocks, wild flowers, pencil shavings, licorice and menthol all take shape in the 2010 Continuum. Here, it is the wine's tension and energy that are front and center. The 2010 isn't a huge Continuum, but it is among the most refined, polished wines that have emerged from this hillside estate on Pritchard Hill. The clean, mineral-infused finish leaves a lasting impression. Readers should be prepared to age the 2010 for at least a handful of years."
International Wine Cellar - "Dark red-ruby. High-pitched aromas of cassis, blueberry and flowers. Lush, silky and fine-grained, with complex flavors of dark berries and graphite minerality complicated by sweet oak and piquant notes of rose petal and green apple. At once powerful and suave on the long back end, finishing with firm tannins and lingering minerality. I retasted the 2009 next to this wine with Tim Mondavi and although the '09 is a remarkably rich wine (I rated it 93 again), the 2010 is more vibrant and delineated. "The 2010 is more nuanced by virtue of its cool season," noted Mondavi. "Its delicacy and nerve are due to the cool vintage." Mondavi does what he describes as "more of a Burgundy elevage," using 75% oak fermenters (and the rest concrete) to get more breadth, suppler tannins and complex aromas in his wine, with just a light stirring of the lees below the cap."
Wine Spectator - "An enticing, graceful style, this achieves a deft balance and refined dark berry, cedar and black licorice notes that linger on the finish as the tannins gain traction and grip."
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Continuum is a celebration of the Mondavi family's proud history in Napa Valley; a single wine from a single estate committed to standing in the company of the great wines of the world. Located high atop Pritchard Hill on the eastern side of the Napa Valley, Continuum is a unique blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. Tim Mondavi believes that wine is an artistic expression of man's harmony with nature and as such, production practices at Continuum honor and support the vineyards through balancing the essence of classic techniques with modern day innovations. Continuum's goat is to craft balanced wine of power, finesse and elegance - wines that re expressions of the land, the people and the vintage. View all Continuum Wines
About Napa ValleyView a map of Napa Valley wineries
It's hard not to think of Napa Valley when thinking of California wines. The region is, after all, the one that brought world recognition to California wine making. The area was settled by a few choice wine families in the 1960's who bet that the wines of the area would grow and flourish. They were right. The Napa wine industry really took off in the 1980's, when vineyard lands were scooped up and vines were planted throughout the county. A number of wineries emerged, from large conglomerates to small boutiques to cult classics. Cabernet Sauvignon is definitely the grape of choice here, with many winemakers also focusing on Bordeaux Blends. Whites are usually Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.
Notable FactsWithin the Napa Valley lie smaller sub-AVAs that lend even more character specifics to the wines. Furthest south is Carneros, followed by Yountville, Oakville & Rutherford. Above those two is St.-Helena and finally, just grated an AVA, Calistoga. These areas are situated on the valley floor and are known for creating rich, smooth Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Chardonnay. There are a few mountain regions as well, nestled on the slopes overlooking the valley AVAs. Those include Howell Mountain, Stags Leap and Mount Veeder. Wines from the mountain regions are often more structured and firm, benefiting from more time in the bottle to evolve and soften.
About CaliforniaIt's not rare to see a wine's country of origin listed as "California." A country into itself in the wine world, California makes enough varieties and styles to match many European wine countries. It produces a diverse range of wines that span the quality spectrum.
The most famous of the California wine regions is Napa Valley, and these wines are certainly outstanding – but it's not as broad and diverse as its larger neighbor, Sonoma County. Down south, Santa Barbara's Santa Maria Valley is well-known for its Rhône blends, as well as cool-climate varieties like Pinot and Chardonnay. The Central Coast, the largest California AVA, has many different microclimates that lead to a wide range of wines with many sub-AVAs.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.