Rudd Jericho Canyon Vineyard (stained label) 1998
Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
The wine exhibits powerful, ripe tannins balanced with concentrated dark fruit flavors and complex aromatics and an integrated yet persistent finish.
The Wine Advocate - "The unfiltered/unfined 1998 Jericho Canyon Vineyard (2,850 cases) spent 16 months in French oak. A sensational effort, it is one of the stars of this challenging vintage. The opaque black/plum color is accompanied by aromas and flavors reminiscent of a blend of Cheval Blanc and La Mission-Haut-Brion from an overripe vintage. Notes of plums, cassis, blackberries, espresso, Asian spices, licorice, cedar, and tapenade make an appearance in both the aromas and flavors. Extremely full-bodied, with sweet tannin, an opulent/voluptuous texture, full body, brilliant purity, and low acidity, this wine represents a synthesis in style between an exotic right bank Bordeaux and a California Cabernet. Having achieved 14.2% alcohol naturally, it is a blend of 79% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Merlot, and 10% Cabernet Franc from a vineyard in northern Napa Valley (the Rudd estate vineyards have not yet come into production)."
Wine Spectator - "A bold, rich and creamy-textured wine, with coffee, currant, black cherry, herb, olive and cedar. Deftly balanced, long and intricate on the finish. New from the owner of the former Girard winery. "
International Wine Cellar - "Ruby-red. Wild plum, truffle, tar and a floral nuance on the nose. At once lush and high-pitched, with concentrated but rather tightly wrapped black fruit, coffee and herbal flavors. Not especially fleshy, but not green; has considerable charm for a wine from the '98 vintage. Finishes with big but even tannins that showed a slight dryness with aeration, and very good length. "This was a more European vintage: really cold," noted Ramey, adding that the crop was saved by excellent October weather."
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Rudd winery was established in 1996, when Leslie Rudd purchased the 54-acre estate in Oakville. Since the purchase, Mr. Rudd has made extensive renovations to the property, to include a complete replanting of the vineyards to close-spaced, red Bordeaux varietals and the expansion and renovation of the winery, including custom-designed tanks and a gentle, gravity-flow system. In addition, 22,000 square feet of caves have been dug below the winery to provide ideal aging conditions. In April 2002, Charles Thomas joined the Rudd team as Director of Vineyards and Winemaking. Charles brings to Rudd over 25 years of winemaking and vineyard experience. Along with the proprietary red wine from Oakville, Rudd will continue to produce small quantities of Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc and Bacigalupi Vineyard Chardonnay from the Russian River Valley. View all Rudd 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 granted 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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