2014 Burgess Estate Hillside Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mtn. Napa

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About the Wine

Longtime Burgess winemaker Bill Sorensen may have retired in 2012, but his region-defining legacy lives on through this magnificent Cab Sauv. This sumptuous, seductively dark red selection is a viticultural memoir of his illustrious 40+ year career, as its bold concentrations of fruit, sturdy tannins, and flavor nuance that brings balance are the kind of elements he built his award-winning career on crafting. Robust notes of black cherry, red cherry, and black currant are tempered by pops of sweet herb and chocolate, all tied tied together by an unobtrusive mineral undertone that guides through its long, dense finish.

Burgess Cellars isn’t just a winery; it’s a portal to Napa’s past and a window to its present. The estate the family-owned winery has called home since its 1972 launch has proudly stood since the 1870s. Its walls are fortified by stories of standing strong through Prohibition and two World Wars, and its vineyards have been traversed by legends like Mike Grgich and Warren Winiarski. Today, the winery overlooks an all-star cast of mind-blowing AVAs from its hillside Howell Mountain perch, including Coombsville, Oakville, Spring Mountain, and Diamond Mountain. While its elevated locale provides stunning views, it also provides each wine crafted from its unique estate vineyards distinctive characteristics that simply aren’t possible from valley vineyards. These singular traits have produced decades’ worth of award-winning wines that inspire great tales whenever they’re poured.

The undulating landscape of Winery Ranch Vineyard allows Burgess Winery to be king of the hill. The estate vineyard’s elevation fluctuates between 650 and 1,000 feet and rocks an average slope of 22%; metrics that naturally allow the fruit grown here to develop absurdly excellent properties. The unique height pops the vines above the frost zone, and this allows the grapes to absorb the area’s hot days and cool nights like a brand-new sponge. Rocky, volcanic soil dominates the hillside, providing the vines with a home that drains very well and offers the perfect amount of restraint. The captivating terroir produces elegant yet decadent fruit that can barely contain the dark berry notes lurking below their skins. They’re properties that can’t be duplicated on flatter landscapes, and they help the wines borne from their grapes rise to Napa Valley’s highest echelon.

Blend: 79% Cabernet Sauvignon - 14% Merlot - 7% Petit Verdot

Winemaker Tasting Notes: Gorgeous black fruit, gravel, violets, black cherry, anise, juicy palate with nice stucture and velvety tannins along with chocolate flavors. Finishes with very elegant bittersweet tannins.


The 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon is deep, powerful and intense. Wild cherry, underbrush, gravel, savory herbs, smoke and earthy notes give the 2014 much of its potent, virile profile. There is plenty to look forward to as the 2014 develops in bottle. This is a lovely wine with classically inspired proportions and plenty of structure. ~92VM