Processing Your Order...

Search for ""

Update your browser to enjoy all that Wine.com has to offer.

It's easy to update and using the latest version
of Internet Explorer means all your web browsing will be better.

Yes, Update Now
Flat front label of wine
Flat front label of wine

Blackbird Vineyards Contrarian Napa Valley Proprietary Red 2012

Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
  • JS93
  • RP91
  • CG91
  • WS90
14.5% ABV
  • WW95
  • RP93
  • JS91
  • WE91
  • WE94
  • RP93
  • WS90
  • RP92
All Vintages
Currently Unavailable $139.99
Try the 2014 Vintage 134 99
139 99
139 99
Save $0.00 (0%)
Ships Tomorrow
Limit 0 bottles per customer
Sold in increments of 0
Add to Cart
1
Limit Reached
0.0 0 Ratings
My Wine Share
Vintage Alert
Alert me when new vintages are available
Rate for better recommendations
(256 characters remaining)
Cancel Save

0.0 0 Ratings
14.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

The 2012 Contrarian opens with expressive notes of succulent black fruit and pepper. On the palate, flavors of blackberry and mocha complement silky layers of intricately structured, fine-grained tannins that hold great density and weight. The lush mid-palate leads to a supple, approachable and harmoniously-precise finish. This wine is gratifying now and will age gloriously with time in the cellar. With no frost, a mild spring and summer, and a peaceful fall, the Contrarian benefitted from what some say was an ideal growing season.

Critical Acclaim

All Vintages
JS 93
James Suckling
A firm and juicy wine with blackberry, hints of new wood and cedar. Full-bodied, velvety and rich. Long finish. A blend of 54% cabernet franc, 23% cabernet sauvignon, and 23% merlot. Drink or hold.
RP 91
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2012 Proprietary Red Contrarian (an equal part blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Cabernet Franc) is slightly more structured. Its dense ruby/purple color is followed by notes of blackcurrants, licorice, lead pencil shavings, vanillin and spice. Made in a fuller-bodied, more structured and masculine style, it should drink well 2016-2028. Rating:91+
CG 91
Connoisseurs' Guide
54% Cabernet Franc; 23% Cabernet Sauvignon; 23% Merlot. Moderately intense and fairly complex with deep, dark cherry fruit joined by elements of graphite, fresh earth and a sweetening note of rich oak, Blackbird’s Contrarion is at once structured and sturdy, but it does not err to extreme toughness and teases with a fine sense of central succulence. It is a serious, cellar-worthy wine whose best lies some years down the line, and it demands five-to-eight years of patient restraint.
WS 90
Wine Spectator
Marked by a rustic mix of dusty herb and cedar notes, this features a firm core of dark berry, savory and loamy flavors, but the fruit pushes through on the finish. Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Drink now through 2027.
View More
Blackbird Vineyards

Blackbird Vineyards

View all wine
Blackbird Vineyards, Napa Valley, California
Video of winery

Blackbird was founded in 2003 with the goal of handcrafting truly expressive wines from the Napa Valley, focusing on Bordeaux varieties. Our wines are an expression of the dynamic terroir of Napa Valley. Only 30 miles long and five miles wide, Napa Valley offers a stunning diversity of soils, climate, and topographical conditions suitable for growing world-class wine grapes. With vigneron Aaron Pott’s guidance, Blackbird’s approach to production relies on multi-sourced vineyards and varieties, allowing for a harmonious whole, greater than the sum of its parts.

Napa Valley

View all wine

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 1960s, 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 1980s, 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 are 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.

Bordeaux Blends

View all wine

One of the world’s most classic and popular styles of red wine, Bordeaux-inspired blends have spread from their homeland in France to nearly every corner of the New World, especially in California, Washington and Australia. Typically based on either Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot and supported by Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Petit Verdot, these are sometimes referred to in the US as “Meritage” blends. In Bordeaux itself, Cabernet Sauvignon dominates in wines from the Left Bank of the Gironde River, while the Right Bank focuses on Merlot. Often, blends from outside the region are classified as being inspired by one or the other.

In the Glass

Cabernet-based, Left-Bank-styled wines are typically more tannic and structured, while Merlot-based wines modeled after the Right Bank are softer and suppler. Cabernet Franc can add herbal notes, while Malbec and Petit Verdot contribute color and structure. Wines from Bordeaux lean towards a highly structured and earthy style whereas New World areas (as in the ones named above) tend to produce bold and fruit-forward blends. Either way, Bordeaux red blends generally have aromas and flavors of black currant, cedar, plum, graphite, and violet, with more red fruit flavors when Merlot makes up a high proportion of the blend.

Perfect Pairings

Since Bordeaux red blends are often quite structured and tannic, they pair best with hearty, flavorful and fatty meat dishes. Any type of steak makes for a classic pairing. Equally welcome with these wines would be beef brisket, pot roast, braised lamb or smoked duck.

Sommelier Secret

While the region of Bordeaux is limited to a select few approved grape varieties in specified percentages, the New World is free to experiment. Bordeaux blends in California may include equal amounts of Cabernet Franc and Malbec, for example. Occassionally a winemaker might add a small percentage of a non-Bordeaux variety, such as Syrah or Petite Sirah for a desired result.

WBO30146836_2012 Item# 140863