Lail J. Daniel Cuvee 2007
Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
If I had to use one word to describe this wine, it would be 'seamless.' Complex notes of cocoa, charcoal, black fruits, and pencil lead give a sense of amazing complexity. Powerful and seductive, this wine lingers on the palate for more than 20 seconds. As the 2006 reminded us of Chateau Latour from Pauillac in Bordeaux, the 2007 would be more reminiscent of the great wines from Chateau Margaux.
The Wine Advocate - "Lail’s flagship wine is the J. Daniel Cuvee. The 2007 is living up to all of its promise when tasted last year from barrel. There are 850 cases of this 100% Cabernet Sauvignon from four separate sites in Napa (in Calistoga, Howell Mountain, Coombsville, and Rutherford). A dense purple color is accompanied by notes of graphite, licorice, black cherry liqueur, black currants, crushed rocks, spice box, and cedar. With Pauillac-like aromatic and flavor profiles, this opulent, full-bodied, rich 2007 reveals superb purity as well as definition. It may even grow in stature over the next five years, and is capable of lasting 20-25+ years. 96+"
International Wine Cellar - "Good deep ruby. Pauillac-like nose combines black cherry, licorice and flinty minerality. Broad and seamless on the palate, with terrific intensity to the flavors of black fruits, minerals and crushed stone. For all its considerable richness and depth, this has plenty of tannic support. Builds slowly and inexorably on the back end, with the element of flinty minerality returning. This should evolve slowly in bottle and last well."
From the somewhat mysterious beginning of the focused and dedicated Gustav Niebaum, through the supervisory interim years of John Daniel, Sr., to the innovative period of John Daniel, Jr., the early history of Inglenook has its fascinations. When John Daniel, Jr., third-generation owner and manager of Inglenook Vineyards, sold the winery in 1964, he thought it was the end of a family tradition that started in Napa Valley in 1879. But history is full of surprises. The Niebaum-Daniel odyssey did not die, but was picked up by Daniel's daughter, Robin Daniel Lail, and her husband, Jon. It was Jon who urged the family to move back to Napa Valley from the Bay Area, and Jon who first returned to the wine business in 1970. Then in 1977 Robin joined the Robert Mondavi Winery, working as Robert Mondavi's assistant for the next five years. In 1982 she co-founded the John Daniel Society with her sister and Christian Moueix to produce Dominus from a vineyard originally part of the Inglenook estate. In 1983 she co-founded Merryvale Vineyards with a group of partners including her husband. The real return to tradition began when Robin sold her interests in Dominus and Merryvale in 1995, and with her family started Lail Vineyards. This venture is dedicated to producing a single proprietary red wine which will rank among the finest wines in the world. While Jon and Shannon Lail are ambassadors at large for the venture, Erin Lail joined the winery in 1998 as the Director of Operations, representing the fifth generation in this ongoing family history. Since the inaugural release of the 1995 J. Daniel Cuvee, the Lails have brought an historic presence and patina to each bottle of wine as they re-kindle their family's winemaking tradition. Production is very limited and the focus on excellence is unrelenting. View all Lail 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.
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