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Seavey Caravina 1999

Other Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
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    Winemaker Notes

    In 1998, we bottled without label as an experimental "house wine" several barrels of red wine not included in the main blend, and we and other family members and friends have drunk it at table when looking for a more approachable wine. Based on the good reception this wine has had, we have decided to make approximately 150 cases of the 1999 vintage, label it "Caravina, " and offer it to a broader group. The name "Caravina", of Latin root, means to us "dear vine," a tribute to the individual vine, the basic element of our precious vineyard. Caravina does not have a varietal designation for it is a potential blend of any and all of our estate grown red grapes not used in our Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot main blends. We are convinced that Caravina will be a delightful addition to our own table, and are pleased to offer it to our customers and friends.

    Critical Acclaim

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    Napa Valley

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    One of the world's most highly regarded regions for wine production and tourism, the Napa Valley is the AVA that brought worldwide recognition to California winemaking. The area was settled by a few choice wine families in the 1960's who bet that the wines of the area would grow and flourish. They were right. The Napa wine industry really took off in the 1980's, when vineyard lands were scooped up and vines were planted throughout the county. A number of wineries emerged, from large conglomerates to small boutiques to cult classics. Cabernet Sauvignon is definitely the grape of choice here, with many winemakers also focusing on Bordeaux blends. Whites are usually Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.

    Within the Napa Valley lie many smaller sub-AVAs that lend even more character specifics to the wines. Furthest south is Carneros, followed by Yountville, Oakville & Rutherford. Above those two are St.-Helena and the valley's newest AVA, Calistoga. These areas are situated on the valley floor and are known for creating rich, smooth Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Chardonnay. There are a few mountain regions as well, nestled on the slopes overlooking the valley AVAs. Those include Howell Mountain, Stags Leap District, and Mt. Veeder. Wines from the mountain regions are often more structured and firm, benefiting from more time in the bottle to evolve and soften.

    Other Red Blends

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    With hundreds of red grape varieties to choose from, winemakers have the freedom to create a virtually endless assortment of blended wines. In many European regions, strict laws are in place determining the set of varieties that may be used, but in the New World experimentation is permitted and encouraged. Blending can be utilized to create complex wines with many different layers of flavors and aromas, or to create more balanced wines. For example, a variety that is soft and full-bodied may be combined with one that is lighter with naturally high acidity. Sometimes small amounts of a particular variety are added to boost color or aromatics. Blending can take place before or after fermentation, with the latter, more popular option giving more control to the winemaker over the final qualities of the wine.

    EPCSEYCAA_1999 Item# 59833