Arietta Variation One 2000  Front Label
Arietta Variation One 2000  Front LabelArietta Variation One 2000  Front Bottle Shot

Arietta Variation One 2000

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  • RP90
750ML / 0% ABV
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750ML / 0% ABV

Winemaker Notes

The first vintage for this revolutionary blend of Merlot (70%) and Syrah (30%). Winemaker John Kongsgaard experimented with blending Merlot with Syrah beginning in the 1996 vintage, and liked the complexity gained by adding the wild, leathery, gamy, and floral qualities of Syrah to the luscious, more fruit-driven flavors of Merlot. Arietta Variation One has been a great success, and tasters have noted that the somewhat richer and grainier tannins of the Syrah make this wine particularly good with grilled meats and game. Bottle aging is needed to subdue the tannins provided by the Syrah. This has now happened to the 2000 Variation One, and the wine is well harmonized, approachable, and most appealing.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 90
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

The 2000 Variation One comes from the Hudson Ranch, and is aged in 100% new oak (none of these wines could be called “oaky”). Its dense purple color is accompanied by sweet aromas of new saddle leather and roasted meats. Although monolithic, it is medium to full-bodied and intense. Given my confidence in Kongsgaard’s winemaking, it will undoubtedly reveal more “music” with 3-4 years of bottle age. A blend of 72% Merlot and 28% Syrah.

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Arietta

Arietta

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Arietta, California
Arietta Proprieters Caren and Fritz Hatton Winery Image
The Arietta project is owned and run by the Kongsgaard and Hatton families. John Kongsgaard, winemaker, is a fifth generation Napan, but the first in his family to make wine. Kongsgaard has grown grapes since 1975 and made wine professionally since 1979, notably for thirteen vintages at Newton and five at Luna, as well as looking after numerous clients as a viticultural and enological consultant. Since founding Arietta and Kongsgaard in 1996, he has limited wine production to that which he can make with his own hands. In 2000, Kongsgaard stopped all consulting activities, devoting himself solely to twenty-eight acres of vineyard and the resulting Arietta and Kongsgaard wines.

Fritz Hatton is the nation's foremost wine auctioneer. He worked for Christie's for most of the last two decades and was in charge of Christie's U.S. wine auctions from 1995 to 1998. In the spring of 2002, Hatton joined the prominent retailer, Zachy's, as auctioneer and consultant to Zachy's Auctions, Inc. He serves as principal auctioneer for the Napa Valley Wine Auction and conducts numerous other charity wine auctions across the U.S. Hatton is responsible for the sales and distribution of the Arietta and Kongsgaard wines and shares the marketing duties with Kongsgaard.

The partners came together through their love of music. Fritz is a serious amateur pianist and singer, and the Kongsgaards present a ten concert classical music series in Napa. Their friendship in music is reflected in the Arietta wine label: Beethoven's manuscript of the sublime Arietta movement of his last piano sonata, Opus 111.

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DDE685420_2000 Item# 685420

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