On the fringe of Atlas Peak, bordering the Oakville AVA our block in Stagecoach Vineyard was planted in 2008 to Mark's exact specifications. One of the highest planted elevations in Stagecoach, this block was difficult to access by vehicle and required many months of dynamiting in preparation for planting.
The sparse soils are the deepest of red and are riddled with volcanic basalt and rocks of all sizes. The block is steeply situated and surrounded by chaparral. Mark selected his favorite ENTAVE clone 169 which produces small berried clusters full of concentrated flavors with a strong sense of terroir.
The 2018 growing season was long and cool with rainfall that visited us during optimal times of the year. e temperatures were moderate and even with no major heat spikes. These growing conditions resulted in a long hang time allowing the full spectrum of aromas and flavors to develop until the September harvest.
Winemaker's Tasting Notes:
The 2018 Stagecoach is a stunner holding nothing back and showing off a decadent array of fruit aromas with black raspberry compote, blackberry pie, intense cassis, black licorice, pencil lead, tobacco leaf, and sun-baked rocks. Beneath this are more subtle layers revealing savory notes of dark chocolate, soy, Asian spices and chaparral brush after a rain. The flavors are a seamless explosion of black and purple fruits framed by intense, yet velvety mountain tannins giving the wine a mouth-filling plushness echoing long after each swallow. Delicious now and over the next 15 plus years!
The 2018 Stagecoach is a knock-out. Inky dark fruit, crème de cassis, licorice, espresso and lavender are kicked up a few notches in this flamboyant, extravagantly ripe Cabernet Sauvignon. This Atlas Peak site requires picking late to ripen the tannins, which results in a decidedly ripe, unctuous Cabernet.” 95 PTS –Antonio Galloni, February 2021