27% Cabernet Sauvignon, 59% Merlot, 7% Petit Verdot, 7% Cabernet Franc. For the 2009 Mad Hatter, we blended fruit from our estate with grapes from other valued sources in the Napa Valley, to create a wine that is soft, rich and generous. Cabernet Sauvignon adds a regal, classic quality to the wine, while smaller percentages of Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot provide a depth and aromatic complexity that makes the wine even more compelling. After a short decanting, the wine comes alive, with deep, ripe notes of blackberry, black tea, and forest floor. On the palate, a solid tannic framework supports the rich fruit flavors, accompanied by subtle notes of gravel and minerals. This wine will easily age for a decade or more, but should probably be consumed now, in its youth, to enjoy all of the bright, fresh fruit character it shows now.
2009 was a long and relatively mild growing season. It was the first of three consecutive cool vintages in our normally warm site. With our fruit being harvested over the course of nearly a full month, we took advantage of the slow, steady ripening, and harvested in micro quantities, to maximize the potential of each variety. In the end, the vast majority of our fruit was fermented in small quantities, right in the barrel. This combination of factors resulted in components with bright acidity, structured tannins, dark color, and expressive aromatics
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