Sterling SVR Reserve 2007
Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
Our 2007 Sterling SVR Reserve is a compelling combination of intense, dark character and gracious, inviting approachability. Heady, complex aromas reveal layers of cherry-almond, black plum and licorice, with subtle oak spices. The intricate blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc lends breadth to the palate, with fleshy fruit up front developing into bittersweet chocolate, espresso and toast notes toward the back. Dense, chewy tannins melt across the finish, followed by persistent fruit that lingers well after the wine has departed. A fine balance of rich flavors and bright acidity, this wine is a perfect fit for an elegant meal of roast lamb or braised short ribs.
About the Vineyards
Vineyards Our SVR is an expression of our winemaking style. We evaluate the characteristics of several varietals from different vineyards to create our ultimate reserve red wine. For 2007, we found the ideal balance of mountain, bench and valley fruit in grapes primarily from Diamond Mountain (33 percent), Yountville (33 percent) and Rutherford (16 percent). Each of these distinct regions contributes a unique profile, building intricate layers and complex character in this special reserve wine.
Each year, we evaluate grapes from our finest vineyards to craft a reserve blend that has a dense, dark fruit core and supple, chocolaty tannins. We want a wine that is complex and ageworthy, but accessible enough to enjoy right away. In 2007, our Cabernet Sauvignon, which makes up 66 percent of the blend, showed fleshy, well-balanced fruit, which was perfectly complemented by the excellent structure and well-built tannins of our Merlot from up the valley. The remainder is Cabernet Franc, which so impressed us with its effusive aromas, rich texture and lovely chocolate-cherry and violet notes that we used it for 7 percent of the blend.
The 2007 vintage was textbook perfect, with a long, even growing season and good warmth for small, concentrated grapes with vibrant flavors. Lower-than-average winter rainfall and a warm spring resulted in early budbreak, which was followed by moderate temperatures throughout the growing season. The cool conditions and long hangtime encouraged full phenolic ripeness and intense flavors in our grapes.
Wine Enthusiast - "Just lovely to drink now, it's so softly lush and decadently delicious. Beguiles the palate with jammy, pastry flavors of raspberries, cherries and sweet oak. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc."
Sterling Vineyards was born in the 1960s, a time when creativity and entrepreneurial spirit abounded, especially in California. In 1964, Peter Newton, once a paper broker in England, purchased 70 acres of land in Calistoga and became a Napa Valley winemaker. He planted grapes others did not, bottled varietals others did not, and built a dramatic winery with an aerial tramway. His innovations put Sterling Vineyards into the public eye and helped establish the Napa Valley as a premier travel destination.
When Newton began planting his estate, Cabernet Sauvignon was the preferred variety. He planted the esteemed Cabernet, but his decision to also plant Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Merlot was a bold move. His Merlot vines were the first significant planting of that variety in the Napa Valley. Newton saw potential in the soft, velvety Merlot fruit, and in 1969 he took a chance by releasing California's first vintage-dated Merlot. This decision flew in the face of traditional standards, which held that Merlot was merely a blending grape, and forever changed the perception of red wine. People started to enter a restaurant and ask for a glass of Merlot! View all Sterling Vineyards 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.
Customer ReviewsSign In to Add Your Review4 }div>3.8 out of 5 stars
- 5 Stars: 3
- 4 Stars: 10
- 3 Stars: 5
- 2 Stars: 0
- 1 Stars: 0
20 ratings, 8 with reviews45/3/2011Don Radames Soto - San Juan, PR44/21/2011
Great Merlot flavor complemented with dark fruit and balanced fruit......oak spices, cherry and chocolate aroma. Perfect with veal and churrasco.Scott Myers - Ennis, TX41/13/2011This is a full bodied big & bold jem coming at you with plenty of cherry, vanilla and a hint of anise. Long finish with a very nice ending. Nice Napa Cab that is still maturing. Will be even better in a few years41/12/2011Great wine.49/16/20129/15/12 could be a 545/25/2011
- Big & Bold
- Pair With
- Lasagne > Meat
A very fine drinking wine. Just right.34/4/2012Sparky G - Simsbury, CT43/16/2011Good, but simply not as good as the 2006. I still drank them all.48/4/2011One of my favorites!!! LOVED it!39/6/2011henry sotomayor - Chicago, IL38/11/2011Red w/Attitude - Miami, FL512/20/2010
- Big & Bold
- Smooth & Supple
carpe vino - Newark, OH46/5/2011
- Big & Bold
A solid 4 stars now and should evolve to 5 within 5 to 10 years. Everything is there right now: fruit, acids, tannins but they just haven't harmonized yet. All the flavors are separate and distinct, not melding. Even decanting and aerating does not help them combine. I hold out great hope for this wine.Scott Rhyan - Lewis Center, OH35/9/2011GRome1 - Alpharetta, GA35/4/2011Designer - Portland, OR54/7/2011
- Big & Bold
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.
- 5 Stars: