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Quintessa 2003

Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
  • WE94
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Winemaker Notes

Quintessa, like all classic wines of the world, bears the same name as the vineyard from which it is made. Our goal is to produce the best expression of this extraordinary vineyard each year. In broad terms, Quintessa is a red meritage wine. The vineyard's diversity provides us wide stylistic options for the wine. Fruit from each component block of Quintessa is harvested, sorted, then gravity fed into either oak or stainless steel fermentation tanks. Once fermentation and maceration are complete, each block wine is aged separately for up to two years in french oak barrels in our caves. After this ageing period the components are brought together and the final Quintessa blend is created. The wine is then bottled and laid down for yet another year before release. Although each vintage is unique, we have discovered that finesse and elegance best express the character of the vineyard and as such, we blend for harmony, balance, and length of flavors. Above all, our objective is to make Quintessa a delicious wine that is complementary to food.

2003 produced wines of infinite complexity that remind us that vintages do make a difference in California. If some vintages are epic Symphonies that dazzle even the untrained ear with their power and force, then 2003 is an intricate string concerto that astounds us with subtlety and speaks to our soul. Quintessa 2003 is a wine that draws its power not from a single idea of concentration but from layer upon layer of complexity. It is an intellectual wine requiring study to understand its full profound genius.

Critical Acclaim

WE 94
Wine Enthusiast

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Quintessa

Quintessa

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Quintessa, , California
Quintessa
In the northeastern corner of Rutherfod lies Quintessa. The estate is one of the most scenic and geographically unique properties of the Napa Valley. When Agustin and Valeria Huneeus began to develop the property as a vineyard in 1990, they availed themselves of the most advanced viticultural research of the time. Valeria Huneeus, in keeping with her vision as steward of this land, has guided Quintessa's evolution from sustainable farming in 1990 to organic farming in 1995 and to biodynamic farming in 2000. The winery at Quintessa was built into one of the property's many hills. Its eco-sensitive design incorporates gravity flow, French oak and stainless steel fermenters specifically tailored to the diverse blocks of the Quintessa vineyard, and naturally cold caves.

Limari Valley

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Sauvignon Blanc

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A crisp, refreshing variety that equally reflects both terroir and varietal character, Sauvignon Blanc is responsible for a vast array of wine styles. A couple of commonalities always exist, however—namely, zesty acidity and intense aromatics. The variety is of French provenance, and is important in Bordeaux and the Loire Valley. It also shines in New Zealand and California, while Chile and South Africa are excellent sources of high-quality, value-priced Sauvignon Blanc. High-quality Sauvignon Blanc is also produced in Washington State, Australia, and parts of northern Italy.

In the Glass

From its homeland in the Loire Valley, where citrus, flinty, and smoky flavors shine through in Sancerre and Pouilly-Fume, to Marlborough, New Zealand, where it is pungent, racy, and “green” (think grass, leaves, gooseberries, and bell peppers) and tastes of grapefruit and passionfruit, Sauvignon Blanc has something to offer every wine drinker. In Bordeaux, it is typically blended with Sémillon and Muscadelle to produce a softer, richer style. In California, any of the aforementioned styles can be emulated.

Perfect Pairings

The freshness of Sauvignon Blanc’s flavor—from bell pepper and cut grass to passionfruit, gooseberry, and ripe kiwi lend it to a range of light, summery dishes including salad, seafood, and mild Asian dishes. Sauvignon Blanc settles in comfortably at the table with notoriously difficult foods like goat cheese and asparagus. When combined with Sémillon (and perhaps some oak), it can be paired with more complex seafood and chicken dishes.

Sommelier Secret

Along with Cabernet Franc, Sauvignon Blanc is the proud parent of Cabernet Sauvignon. That green bell pepper aroma that all three varieties share is no coincidence—it comes from a high concentration of pyrazines (an herbaceous aromatic compound) inherent to each member of the family.

SWS141311_2003 Item# 88536

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