Emmolo Sauvignon Blanc 2012
Sauvignon Blanc from Napa Valley, California
An elegant and refined style of Sauvignon Blanc that is subtle and balanced, with minerality and bright natural acidity. On the nose, aromas of citrus, iron, wet stone and a hint of D'Anjou pear temp your senses, while a crisp lightness, balanced acidity and underlying notes of fleshy grapefruit and lime zest please the palate. The significant minerality and soft body rounds out the wine. This Sauvignon Blanc was made to pair with food, yet is very versatile. Bottled using a Guala twist top in lieu of cork.
Jenny Wagner, Winemaker
In the Vineyard
I believe the key to creating a truly unique expression of California Sauvignon Blanc begins in the vineyards. A variety of effective methods were taken to decrease crop production for higher quality wine, including bloom brushing, root pruning and deficit irrigation.
For this vintage, I sourced grapes from two Napa Valley vineyards – Emmolo Rutherford and Emmolo Oak Knoll. Even though innovative farming techniques are the foundation for producing great wines, I also had to work with what Mother Nature handed me. The 2012 vintage had a mild growing season that was longer than usual, allowing for slow ripening and a long "hang time." Throughout the growing season, we made multiple leaf-pulling and crop thinning passes, focusing on the fruit zone to give each cluster a kiss of the summer's sun. The fruit was brought in using a combination of hand and machine harvesting during the early morning hours between August 28th and September 12th.
James Suckling - "This is tangy and fresh, with sliced-melon and mineral character. Full body with crisp acidity and a bright, clean finish. Like a pretty young white Bordeaux. A new wine from the daughter of Chuck Wagner of Caymus. Drink now."
Jenny Wagner has taken the reins of Emmolo (m – oh – low) Winery from her mother, Cheryl Emmolo, the owner and founder of this lovely Rutherford estate.
Jenny Wagner's family has a long-standing history in Napa Valley beginning with her great-grandfather, Italian immigrant, Salvatore Emmolo, who planted grapevines and started a grapevine rootstock nursery in Rutherford in the 1920s. He grew and sold phylloxera-resistant vines – the same "resistant" vines that saved the wine industry from the devastating vinifera louse of the late 19th century. His son, Frank Emmolo, ran Emmolo Nursery and built a strong following among Napa Valley grape growers, becoming the leading supplier to Napa Valley vintners for five decades.
After becoming established grape growers, the Emmolos opened up Palermo Winery in 1934, named after the city from which they emigrated. The winery operated for less than a decade, closing due to the public's lack of interest in wine. As things worked out, the family sustained the land over the years and tossed their hat into the ring again, with Cheryl Emmolo establishing the building as Emmolo Winery. Now Jenny Wagner will continue the family legacy of farming vines and making Emmolo wine in the original winery built by her great grandfather in 1934. View all Emmolo 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 & Crisp
- Light to medium bodied wines that are high in acid and light to medium fruit. Typically no oak.
Fruity & Smooth
- Light to medium bodied wines with lots of juicy fruit, typically medium acid and medium oak.
Rich & Creamy
- Full bodied wines that have typically undergone malo-lactic fermentation and/or spent time in oak.