Blackbird Vineyards Illustration Proprietary Red 2008 Front Label
Blackbird Vineyards Illustration Proprietary Red 2008 Front Label

Blackbird Vineyards Illustration Proprietary Red 2008

  • WE93
  • RP90
750ML / 14.5% ABV
Other Vintages
  • CG95
  • JS91
  • RP91
  • RP91
  • JS90
  • WE93
  • WE94
  • WS91
  • WE92
  • WE97
  • RP92
  • JS91
  • RP91
  • CG90
  • WS90
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750ML / 14.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

The 2008 Illustration offers intense aromatics of blackberry, black licorice, and dark chocolate. The rich and balanced mid-palate is rounded out with plush flavors of cherry, toffee, and cocoa powder. The finish possesses good length with dense, velvety tannins leading to a succulent tiramisu finish. Illustration is optimal to drink after decanting or can be laid down to develop further with time in the bottle. Blackbird's 2008 vintage wines offer incredible elegance and fruit concentration imparted by the low-yielding, high-quality Napa Valley growing season.

Illustration represents the core – the heart – of Blackbird Vineyards. Every element of Blackbird's multi-faceted wine portfolio draws inspiration from this singular, Pomerol-inspired Merlot. It is an undiluted illustration of the passion, time and concentration invested in creating elegant, multi-layered wines. Illustration challenges the notion that Cabernet Sauvignon is the only age-worthy red wine crafted in the Napa Valley.

Critical Acclaim

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WE 93
Wine Enthusiast
Lush. smooth and complex, this Merlot-based blend seems capable of a little development in the cellar. It's pretty tannic, although the cherry fruit is sweet and bright. Try holding for a year or two, but if you pop the cork now, give the wine a few hours of decanting.
RP 90
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2008 Illustration, which tends to be mostly Merlot blended with small amounts of Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc, possesses a dark ruby/purple color as well as big, sweet aromas of mocha, coffee bean, black cherries and spice box. Fleshy and medium to full-bodied, it has slightly more tannin and structure than the 2008 Arise. This is a project of up-and-coming wine consultants, Aaron Pott and Sara Gott. The goal is to produce Right Bank Bordeaux-styled wines from various blends. As I wrote last year in issue #186, I thought the 2006s and 2007s were strong offerings, and the four outstanding efforts in 2008 are better than the 2006s, but not quite as good as the 2007s because they are less opulent and exuberant. Nevertheless, they are rich, expressive wines made from fruit grown in the Oak Knoll region of the southern Napa Valley.
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Blackbird Vineyards

Blackbird Vineyards

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Blackbird Vineyards, California
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Blackbird Vineyards is an artisanal producer of Bordeaux-inspired wines from Napa Valley. Crafted by esteemed winemaker Aaron Pott, each wine in the portfolio is a true example of Blackbird’s ongoing commitment to quality and diversity of terroir by partnering with a selection of Napa Valley’s most prestigious vineyards. These include sites in high altitudes of Spring Mountain and Atlas Peak, the alluvial terrain of Saint Helena and the Oak Knoll district in Napa, and the cool climates of Carneros.  

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Undoubtedly proving its merit over and over, Napa Valley is a now a leading force in the world of prestigious red wine regions. Though Cabernet Sauvignon dominates Napa Valley, other red varieties certainly thrive here. Important but often overlooked include Merlot and other Bordeaux varieties well-regarded on their own as well as for their blending capacities. Very old vine Zinfandel represents an important historical stronghold for the region and Pinot noir is produced in the cooler southern parts, close to the San Pablo Bay.

Perfectly situated running north to south, the valley acts as a corridor, pulling cool, moist air up from the San Pablo Bay in the evenings during the hot days of the growing season, which leads to even and slow grape ripening. Furthermore the valley claims over 100 soil variations including layers of volcanic, gravel, sand and silt—a combination excellent for world-class red wine production.

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STC754887_2008 Item# 110763

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