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The site’s elevation is 2400 feet, making it one of the highest vineyards in Napa County. The first plantings, in 1975, were devoted entirely to Zinfandel. The estate was purchased in 1980 by Joyce Black Sears and Jerre Sears who planted 5 acres of Cabernet in 1985. Since it sits high above the valley fog, the vineyard gets more morning sunlight than the lower elevations, though the cool mountain air prevents the grapes from baking in the constant sun. The Black Sears Vineyard is not only certified organic, but also completely biodynamically farmed.
The vineyard contains rocky and porous soils of volcanic ash and red clay which provide excellent drainage. Average yearly rainfall is 45 inches, about 10 inches more than the valley floor.
Dark garnet in color, there’s a pantry-ful of spices in the nose—black pepper, dried clove, nutmeg and cinnamon—along with ripe cherry, earthy raspberry and sweet vanillin oak. Though briary and peppery, it still has a smooth and creamy texture, displaying the power and restraint that true “mountain wines” possess. You’re really going to like this wine!
*Taster’s Guild International