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The Prisoner Wine Company The Prisoner 2017

Other Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
  • WW92
15.2% ABV
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4.5 131 Ratings
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4.5 131 Ratings
15.2% ABV

Winemaker Notes

The Prisoner was inspired by the “mixed blacks” first made by the Italian immigrants who originally settled in Napa Valley. The Prisoner is now the most recognized Napa Valley red blend, leading the resurgence of interesting blends by incorporating Zinfandel with the unlikely mix of Cabernet Sauvignon, Petite Sirah, Syrah, and Charbono.

The 2017 vintage features enticing aromas of Bing cherry, dark chocolate, clove, and roasted fig. Persistent flavors of ripe raspberry, boysenberry, pomegranate, and vanilla linger harmoniously, for a smooth and luscious finish.

The label is based on the Little Prisoner etching, by one of Spain’s most famous painters, Francisco de Goya, who lived from 1746-1828. It depicts the atrocities of war between France and Spain during the artist’s time.

Critical Acclaim

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WW 92
Wilfred Wong of Wine.com
COMMENTARY: When Dave Phinney first launched The Prisoner Wine in 2000, the wine became an immediate marketplace star. A massive red wine, with an artsy label, this red wine was the subject of much controversy. Old time, classic wine drinkers eschewed its high alcohol and sweetness—though it was technically a "dry" wine. Younger New World wine drinkers couldn't get enough of it. From my perspective, I placed this wine in the off-dry to medium sweet style, and I consider it to be a dinner wine. The 2017 Prisoner Red delivers quite well. TASTING NOTES: This wine is powerful, mouthfilling, and lush. Its aromas and flavors of black, candied fruits and toasty barrels should make it beautiful pairing partner with grilled baby back pork ribs in a sweet-spice hoisin sauce. (Tasted: November 5, 2018, San Francisco, CA)
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The Prisoner Wine Company

The Prisoner Wine Company

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The Prisoner Wine Company, California
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The Prisoner Wine Company’s eponymous first wine was inspired by the drinkable “mixed blacks” made by the Italian immigrants who originally settled in Napa Valley. Since launch, The Prisoner soon became recognized as one of the most innovative Napa Valley wines, leading the resurgence of California red blends and earning “cult wine” status. Now complemented by a white blend (Blindfold), Chardonnay (The Snitch), Cabernet Sauvignon (Cuttings), Zinfandel (Saldo), Merlot (Thorn) and a Red Blend (Dérangé), The Prisoner Wine Company’s winemaking philosophy remains the same: To collaborate with a family of growers throughout California’s best winegrowing regions to craft wines of exceptional quality and unexpected character.

The Prisoner Wine Company acquires grapes from more than 100 vineyards throughout California’s premier grape-growing regions, partnering with phenomenal growers who are dedicated to cultivating unique varieties. Chrissy Wittmann and her team of winemakers collaborate with this family of growers, visiting each vineyard site throughout the year to carefully assess the style and quality of every lot to make the best possible wine from each vintage.

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Napa Valley

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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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SWS922547_2017 Item# 512177