Drought comes as a curse to most farmers, but it is often a boon to winemakers. The 2013 vintage in Northern California constitutes one of the driest on record, yet the words “idyllic” and “near-perfect” flow from the mouths of viticulturists and winemakers alike in describing the 2013 vintage in Northern California. Although dry, there were nearly no heat spikes in 2013 and the harvest was cool and sunny, allowing for long hang times and wines of considerable depth of character. The 2013 Obsidian Ridge Estate Red Hills Cabernet Sauvignon ranks among the finest ever produced from this splendid vineyard. From a well of deep purple springs entrancing aromas of blackberry, blueberry, fennel and roasted coffee coupled with hints of cinnamon, cardamom, and vanilla. On the palate, the 2013 Obsidian Ridge Estate Cabernet Sauvignon explodes, offering equal parts flesh and bone. Plenty of juicy blackberry fruit is backed up by ripe, authoritative tannins. With a bit of aeration, this Obsidian Ridge’s mid-palate takes on a lovely velvety texture, before finishing with a bang. Although delicious now for its youthful ardor, additional time in bottle will only increase the drinking pleasure of this exceptional Cabernet Sauvignon. For optimal enjoyment now we suggest serving the 2013 Obsidian Ridge Estate Cabernet Sauvignon at cool room temperature (59°-64° F), after at least 30 minutes of aeration in a glass or decanter. Estimated Maturity: 2017-2025.
Hearty wines of formidable character and structure such as the 2013 Obsidian Ridge Estate Red Hills Cabernet Sauvignon deserve the finest cuts of meat and the freshest vegetables and legumes one can muster as accompaniments. Lamb tenderloin topped with a complex Cabernet au jus or rubbed with fresh garlic and then basted with olive oil, rosemary and thyme pairs beautifully with this wine. Ossobuco gets two thumbs up as well. Braised venison served with caramelized onions offers another tasty companion. And yes, dry aged beef, preferably a Rib-Eye or Porterhouse, topped with Portabella mushrooms in a rich, herb-infused sauce works wonders, too, in the presence of Obsidian Ridge’s full-throttle 2013 Red Hills Cabernet Sauvignon. A thick, highly charged lentil soup with carrot and sweet and hot Italian sausage makes for another tasty pairing with the 2013 Obsidian Ridge Estate Cabernet Sauvignon. A plate of high quality cheeses consisting of Fontina, Saint Aubray, and lightly smoked Gouda is easy to prepare, yet it provides another satisfying companion to Obsidian Ridge’s outstanding 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon. Enjoy!
Most of the world’s greatest Cabernet Sauvignons flow from the hillsides and mountain tops of the Mayacamas Range of Northern California. Napa Valley and the Red Hills American Viticultural Area (AVA) in neighboring Lake County, just over the Napa border, provide the ideal soil and climate for the thick-skinned, sun-worshipping Cabernet Sauvignon – the planet’s most revered red grape variety. It is here that the Obsidian Ridge Vineyard is planted at 2,640 feet atop the Mayacamas Range in the Red Hills AVA. Red Hills is a relatively new American Viticultural Area named for the distinctive volcanic soils that define this spectacular mountain appellation. Obsidian Ridge’s 105-acre estate vineyard sits on a steep slope of red soil shot through with obsidian gravel – the perfect terroir for Cabernet Sauvignon. The vineyard’s exceptional, unrestricted drainage and meager soil fertility yield a flavorful, powerful Cabernet Sauvignon that ages well.
Obsidian Ridge is owned and run by Tricycle Wine Partners, Michael Terrien and Arpad and Peter Molnar (the latter formally of Molnar Family Vineyard), who also produce Poseidon Vineyard’s outstanding Chardonnay and Pinot Noir in Carneros. At Obsidian Ridge, the partners along with award-winning winemaker Alex Beloz and their small team grow the grapes, oversee the vineyard, make the barrels, and craft the wine – a rare feat in California where so much of the state’s wines are produced by large corporate entities who source grapes from numerous growers and locales and allow outside entities to tend to the details. At Obsidian Ridge, it is all hands on deck, and no one is afraid to get his hands dirty.
“The 2013 Obsidian Ridge Estate Red Hills Cabernet Sauvignon is a blend of eight blocks from the Obsidian Ridge Vineyard, the lush flavors and sweetness come from the fruit picked on the steep slopes that rise from 2,300´ to 2,640´. The spicy aroma and structure comes from fruit picked later in the season from the lower blocks of the vineyard at 2,300´. A small percent of Petit Verdot was added for aromatic intensity and volume. The young wines were placed in our Kádár Hungary barrels where they aged for 21 months.”
Alex Beloz, Winemaker
Michael Blaise Terrien, Founding Winemaker
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