Roberts + Rogers Louer Family Cabernet Sauvignon 2016
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Louer Family comes from St. Helena and offers a beautiful, elegant, medium to full-bodied style as well as classic crème de cassis, blueberry, graphite, lead pencil, and hints of leafy herbs. This beauty takes time to open up but is approachable today and should have 15+ years of prime drinking.
Located to the east of St. Helena, at an elevation ranging from 1400 to 2200 feet, Howell Mountain is considered one of the most prestigious wine growing regions in the world. Roberts and Rogers sources its grapes for this wonderful wine from the Howell Mountain sub appellation area and for the present vintages from a vineyard jointly developed by Roberts and Rogers in 2000.
The first vintage of Roberts + Rogers, Howell Mountain was the 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon, released in 2007 with around 300 cases available. The wine was immediately met with a warm welcome from the privileged few to enjoy that first vintage.
In 2009, Roger Louer produced Louer Family Reserve Cabernet from his personal estate in St. Helena for a select group of friends. The wine was sourced from the best barrels of the 34 acre estate and has sold out before it was produced for the past three years. Roberts + Rogers will release the 2012 vintage under the R+R label for the first time.
Since that first release, the Roberts + Rogers wines have continued to improve in excellence, receiving numerous awards and accolades.
St. Helena is in the heart of the Napa Valley, nestled between Calistoga to the north and Rutherford on its southern border. On its western side, the Mayacamas Mountains guard it from the cooling effects of the Pacific Ocean; to its east stand the Vaca Mountains. In conjunction, these mountain ranges serve to lock in summer daytime heat. But in the evening, cool air from the San Pablo Bay funnels up through the valley, creating very chilly nights. It isn’t uncommon for temperatures to drop 50 degrees, a shift that promotes a balance of sugar ripeness and acidity in wine grapes.
St. Helena contains a plethora of different soil types in a small area, which have been enhanced over centuries by rain runoff from both mountain ranges. Its vineyards cover a variety of terrain, spreading across the bucolic valley floor and its benchlands.
These ideal topographic and climatic growing conditions easily caught the attention of early winemaking pioneers. In fact, St. Helena is the birthplace of Napa Valley’s commercial wine industry. Dr. Crane founded his cellar in 1859, David Fulton in 1860 and Charles Krug in 1861.
Today there are no less than 400 separate vineyards planted within the 12,000 acres that make up the St. Helena appellation.
A noble variety bestowed with both power and concentration, Cabernet Sauvignon enjoys success all over the globe. 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 from the Napa Valley is responsible for some of the world’s most prestigious, age-worthy 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.
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.
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.