Sweetwater Ranch Cabernet Sauvignon
There are only ten rows in one particular vineyard in Northern California’s sprawling Napa Valley worthy of growing the grapes that are used to produce what wine experts are hailing as “one of the best new Cabernet Sauvignons on the market today.” Levendi’s 100 percent Cabernet, which hails from the Sweetwater Ranch, is characterized as “a bold wine with fresh currant and blueberry flavors accompanied by smooth, ripe tannins topped by a luxurious finish of mint chocolate.” In just a short period of time, Levendi has amassed critical praise and been embraced by high-end retailers and fine restaurants throughout California -- ideal outlets for reaching those who appreciate the wine’s extraordinary qualities. In fact, the very name “Levendi” is Greek in origin and denoting and synonymous with a “celebration of life and day of achievements” — an apt description considering the extraordinary journey that culminated with the debut of this fine wine.
A portion of the Sweetwater Ranch in the Oak Knoll District was the source for this distinctive Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. The Oak Knoll District is located just north of the city of Napa and east of the town of Yountville. Grapes from the Sweetwater Ranch provides a great purity of cassis fruit, mineral notes and a Bordeaux-like structure.
The 2001 growing season was an intriguing and wonderful year. A late spring frost, followed by an early heat spike, gave way to a gentle and benevolent summer of cool mornings and warm clear afternoons. In mid-October, after hearing of an impending heavy rain, nearly sixteen tons of Cabernet Sauvignon grapes were harvested. The luxury of the extended fruit hang time resulted in near perfect sugars, true ripeness and maximum character richness.
Following crushing and de-stemming, the grapes were left to soak for three days before inoculation of the yeast. Over the course of the next several days, the juice was pumped over the skins to extract optimal flavor and color. Once the wine completed fermentation, it was racked and placed in French Oak barrels for 14 months.
An intense and full-bodied wine with deep scarlet color and flavors of fresh currant and rich plums. The long, luxurious finish of mint chocolate topped by the smooth, ripe tannins makes this a purely enjoyable wine. It would be ideal with a variety of dishes, including sautéed wild mushrooms with beef; Szechwan foods with plum sauce, or wild rice with dried cranberries and almonds.
Harvest Date: October 17, 2001
Barrel Aging: 14 months French oak
Harvest Brix: 26° (weighted avg.)
Blend: 100% Cabernet Sauvignon
Titratable Acid: 0.42g/100ml
Appellation: Oak Knoll District
Suggested Retail: $45.00 per bottle
Alison Green Doran