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Flat front label of wine
Flat front label of wine

Bond Melbury (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2012

Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
  • JS99
  • RP95
  • WS92
0% ABV
  • RP97
  • JS97
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  • WS92
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  • RP95
  • RP95
  • WS94
  • RP97
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  • RP90
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Winemaker Notes

The name Melbury is in homage to an historic area in London, where the estate owners reside much of the year. Since its debut with the 1999 vintage, the consistent hallmarks of Melbury have been plush red fruits (currants, bing cherries), redolent with spice and the scent of violets. Elegance and a supple texture define the structure of this wine. The particular exposition of this rocky 7-acre hillside vineyard is southerly overlooking Lake Hennessey, allowing the vines to capture the morning sun yet moderating afternoon temperatures.

Critical Acclaim

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JS 99
James Suckling
Aromas of terracotta, clay and plum. Kiln too. Full-bodied with super freshness and balance that then shows an incredible finish with an electrical aftertaste. Vibrant. Tingling. Better in 2018 but so wonderful to taste now. Wow. Makes you want to drink it! This is from a very clay-soiled hillside vineyard.
RP 95
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
From a 7-acre hillside vineyard overlooking Lake Hennessey, the 2012 Melbury, like its siblings, is 100% Cabernet Sauvignon aged in 100% new oak for a minimum of 24 to 28 months, then bottled unfiltered. The wine displays beautiful blackberry fruit, some charcoal, loamy soil undertones, forest notes, lots of spice, a full-bodied, multi-dimensional mouthfeel, and a super finish of 45+ seconds.
WS 92
Wine Spectator
Young and unevolved, with dusty, cedary tannins outlining the dried berry, currant, cassis and licorice notes. Ends with a gravelly mouthfeel.
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Bond
Bond, Napa Valley, California
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The enduring vision at Bond is to create a portfolio of wines that are diverse in their geographic representation and "grand cru" in quality, all under the umbrella of one philosophy, one facility and one mark. Sourced from select hillside estates, the Cabernet Sauvignon-based wines of Bond vividly demonstrate the range of Napa Valley's finest terroirs.

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.

Bordeaux Blends

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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.

STC211657_2012 Item# 239292