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Atlas Peak Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2012

Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
  • WW90
  • W&S90
14% ABV
  • WW90
  • WE90
  • WE94
  • WE90
  • W&S90
  • WE91
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3.6 15 Ratings
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3.6 15 Ratings
14% ABV

Winemaker Notes

The 2012 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon displays deep purple-red color with aromas of blueberry, blackberry, cassis, sage, hint of bay leaf, chocolate. Full-bodied yet balanced with equal measures of dark fruit, classic dried herb notes, and varietal Cabernet spice.

Critical Acclaim

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WW 90
Wilfred Wong of Wine.com
A perfect picture of a Napa Valley AVA Cabernet, the 2012 Atlas Peak deftly combines the AVA's of Howell Mountain, Spring Mountain, Mt. Veeder and Atlas Peak to bring us flavors of ripe red and black currants, a hint of dust and firm, sweet tannins. Drinks very well now and sure to get even better with a bit of time. Winemaker Ondine Chattan has consistently produced wines of great style and elegance and this wine fits well in the scenario. Enjoy this one with seared beef over freshly tossed salad greens. (Tasted: May 21, 2015, San Francisco, CA)
W&S 90
Wine & Spirits
A blend of fruit from mountain, bench and valley floor sites, including the home estate rising to 2,400 feet in the hills east of Yountville, this channels diverse growing conditions into a spicy, foursquare cabernet. The black pepper tension in the tannins seems to restrict the warmth and roundness of the fruit, delivering a lean red with enough structure and richness for roast leg of lamb.
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Atlas Peak

Atlas Peak Winery

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Atlas Peak Winery, Napa Valley, California
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Atlas Peak was established in 1987. Over time it became clear that Atlas Peak's most valuable hidden resource was literally underfoot: the elevation of its vineyards. The grapes growing at high elevation, and above the natural fog line, experience much lower daytime temperatures than those on the valley floor, allowing the grapes to stay cool while gaining maximum sun exposure. As a result, growers up on the mountain can afford to harvest later and pick for flavor with less worry about over ripening and excessive alcohol. No grape develops as well in mountain conditions as Cabernet Sauvignon.

Atlas Peak crafts Napa Valley mountain appellation Cabernet Sauvignon from such prestigious areas as Howell Mountain, Spring Mountain District and Mount Veeder, in addition to Atlas Peak. Atlas Peak’s Cabernet Sauvignon wines are driven by an appreciation of mountain-grown fruit and winemaking techniques that capture the distinct flavors derived from the mountain appellations in which they are grown.

Napa Valley

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One of the world's most highly regarded regions for wine production as well as tourism, the Napa Valley was responsible for bringing worldwide recognition to California winemaking. In the 1960's, a few key wine families settled the area and hedged their bets on the valley's world-class winemaking potential—and they were right.

The Napa wine industry really took off in the 1980's, when producers scooped up vineyard lands and planted vines throughout the county. A number of wineries emerged, and today Napa is home to hundreds of producers ranging from boutique to corporate. Cabernet Sauvignon is definitely the grape of choice here, with many winemakers also focusing on Bordeaux blends. Napa whites are usually Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.

Within the Napa Valley lie many smaller sub-AVAs that claim specific characteristics based on situation, slope and soil. Farthest south and coolest from the influence of the San Pablo Bay is Carneros, followed by Coombsville to its northeast and then Yountville, Oakville and Rutherford. Above those is the warm St. Helena and the valley's newest and hottest AVA, Calistoga. These areas follow the valley floor and are known generally for creating rich, dense, complex and smooth reds with good aging potential. The mountain sub appellations, nestled on the slopes overlooking the valley AVAs, include Stags Leap District, Atlas Peak, Chiles Valley (farther east), Howell Mountain, Mt. Veeder, Spring Mountain District and Diamond Mountain District. Wines from the mountain regions are often more structured and firm, benefiting from a lot of time in the bottle to evolve and soften.

Cabernet Sauvignon

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A noble variety bestowed with both power and concentration, Cabernet Sauvignon is now the world's most planted grape variety. Inherently high in tannins and acidity, the best bottlings of Cabernet can age beautifully, with the ability to last fifty years or more. Cabernet Sauvignon flourishes in temperate climates like Bordeaux's Medoc region and forms the base of the Medoc reds, which are typically mostly Cabernet with Merlot and smaller amounts of some combination of Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Petit Verdot. (Enjoying a great deal of success in various regions around the world, this blend is now globally referred to as a Bordeaux Blend.) Cabernet Sauvignon has enjoyed great success throughout the world, particularly in the Napa Valley, and is responsible for some of the world’s most prestigious and sought-after “cult” wines.

In the Glass

High in color, tannin and extract, Cabernet Sauvignon expresses notes of blackberry, cassis, plum, currant, spice and tobacco. In Bordeaux and elsewhere in the Old World you'll find the more earthy, tannic side of Cabernet, where it is typically blended to soften tannins and add complexity. In warmer regions like California Washington, Argentina, Chile and Australia, you can typically expect more ripe fruit flavors upfront.

Perfect Pairings

Cabernet Sauvignon is right at home with rich, intense meat dishes—beef, lamb and venison, in particular—where its opulent fruit and decisive tannins make an equal match to the dense protein of the meat. With a mature Cabernet, opt for tender, slow-cooked meat dishes.

Sommelier Secrets

Despite the modern importance and ubiquity of Cabernet Sauvignon, it is actually a relatively young variety. In 1997, DNA profiling revealed the grape to be a spontaneous crossing of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc which took place in 17th century southwestern France.

SWS365289_2012 Item# 134431