Beaulieu Vineyard Rarity Cabernet Sauvignon 2013 1.5L
2013 Rarity comes from our finest barrel-lots of Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot, selected from our oldest vines in predominantly BV Ranches No. 1 and 2.
Georges de Latour originally planted these vineyards in the early 1900s. Rarity has only been produced in exceptional vintages ('68, '73, '79, '90).
The Beaulieu Vineyard 2013 Rarity delivers massive power and weight, yet with uncommon elegance and suppleness. The wine’s profuse aromas of blackberry, cassis, dark chocolate and violet are mirrored by the opulent flavors that explode on the palate. Seamlessly integrated vanilla and oak spice nuances, from barrel fermentation and aging in entirely new barrels, add even more complexity to the layered Cabernet Sauvignon expression. “Rutherford Dust” tannins contribute texture, while bright acidity keeps its fresh, purity of focus. This is a wine that will age for decades.
While Napa Valley winemakers heralded the 2012 vintage as outstanding, the 2013 vintage was—magnificent! The unusually warm, dry winter promoted early budbreak, which gave the vines an early start to the 2013 growing season. Ideal conditions prevailed through flowering, fruit set and ripening, with the low rainfall keeping the grapes desirably small. While harvest was early, the bloom-to-harvest span was not compressed; thus, the Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot grapes benefited from adequate hangtime to develop exceptionally ripe, balanced flavors.
The 2013 Rarity was chosen from the “best of the best” barrel-lots of wine from the outstanding vintage. Through a highly selective process, we narrowed the components for the Rarity blend to represent predominantly old vines in four vineyards: BV Ranch No. 1 and No. 2; our Hewitt Estate Vineyard; and a neighboring small vineyard at the base of the Mayacamas Mountains. The vines, with the majority planted in the 1980s, were grafted to clones that yield small, intensely flavored grapes. All four vineyards are deeply rooted in well-draining, alluvial fan soils on the western bench-lands of Napa Valley’s Rutherford AVA.
At the winery, we hand sorted first the clusters and then the destemmed grapes to retain only the highest quality fruit. For early integration of oak character and to enhance the supple mouthfeel, 56 percent of the Rarity components were barrel-fermented, with the balance in stainless steel and wood tanks. Following 30 to 35-days of maceration (skin contact) and gentle pressing in a basket press, the wine was returned to barrels for malolactic fermentation and aging. To balance he tremendous intensity of dark fruit character, we chose to age this wine in 100 percent new barrels. Michel Rolland, who has consulted for Beaulieu Vineyard for nearly a decade, blended the wine components with Winemaker Jeffrey Stambor in January 2015, thus giving the winet ime to marry before it was bottled in August 2015. Ten percent Petit Verdot from BV Ranch #1 added even more structure and complexity to the Cabernet Sauvignon blend.
Wine AdvocateFlirting with perfection... this wine is magical. Inky purple/black, with a gorgeous nose of pen ink, cedar wood, vanillin, crÃƒÂ¨me de cassis, and blacker fruits, there's some forest floor, full-bodied richness, and super-high extract and tannins. It is a massive wine, highly extracted, and built for long, long-term cellaring.
Station Plaza WineWe tasted this with Jeffrey Stambor, the winemaker and it was one of the best cabernets we have ever had. Its full of life, has that big Napa full bodied kick but also very silky, sophisticated and complex. First you get a little spice, then bam - its on to a little mocha and coffee. Its a truly amazing expression of Napa grapes and an all star winemaking finishing touch. One more thing was the French oak has an amazing finishing effect. Jeff says he like to experiment and play around in the "lab" by pushing boundaries and boy oh boy did he hit this one out of the park. ! Kevin 98-100