The 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon was just bottled this past summer. It is of course a very young wine, but possesses tremendous aromatic nuance and freshness to play off a core of huge dark fruit. Readers will have to be patient with the 2018, as it is an imposing, vertical Cabernet that needs years to be at its best. Bright floral and spice notes lift the soaring finish as the wine's inner sweetness gradually emerges over time. The 2018 is super-impressive. That's all there is to it.
Antonio Galloni, Vinous.com (October 2021)
This is an earthy, classically structured wine of great pedigree and style. It goes against the grain of bigger and riper wines. Tangy red fruit, sage and pencil shavings make for an expressive, lengthy and complex experience of elegance and grace. This wine will do well in the cellar.
Virginie Boone, Wine Enthusiast (December 2022)
About this WINE
Mayacamas Vineyards is situated in the Mount Veeder AVA (American Viticultural Area), which is one of the cooler and higher elevation regions within the Napa Valley. This location and the estate’s elevation provide unique terroir and microclimates for grape cultivation.
The vineyards were founded in 1889, making it one of the region’s oldest wineries. The estate has changed hands over the years and is now owned by Charles and Ali Banks, who acquired it in 2013. They have invested in renovating and revitalising the estate while maintaining its commitment to producing high-quality, terroir-driven wines.
Mayacamas produces classic and age-worthy wines, particularly Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay. The winemaking philosophy is centred on minimal intervention and a focus on expressing the unique character of their vineyards, using traditional techniques, including large oak barrels, to create wines that last and evolve over time.
North Coast's Sonoma County is California's largest AVA with 19,800 ha (2005) of vines. It has forever been the home of the meek and mild small grower as compared to the grandeur and might of neighbour Napa; more picturesque too, as much of the sandy, gravely loam land belonged to true orchards and fruit farms until the 1970s.
Sonoma Valley covers a small part of Sonoma County but its wines often outshine its illustrious neighbours in Napa County. Zinfandel, Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Cabernet Sauvignon are cultivated here with much success. Sonoma Valley has long enjoyed a special place in the history of California wine. The first vineyards in the valley were planted by Franciscan monks in 1823. In 1857 Agoston Haraszthy, one of the founding fathers of California's commercial winemaking, opened here the highly successful Buena Vista Winery.
Closer to the coast are the region's top producing AVAs for Pinot Noir and Chardonnay: Russian River, Sonoma Coast and Green Valley, while the slightly warmer Dry Creek and Alexander Valleys have earned a reputation as a hotspot for Cabernet, and increasingly, Zinfandel and Merlot.
The most famous red wine grape in the world and one of the most widely planted.
It is adaptable to a wide range of soils, although it performs particularly well on well-drained, low-fertile soils. It has small, dusty, black-blue berries with thick skins that produce deeply coloured, full-bodied wines with notable tannins. Its spiritual home is the Médoc and Graves regions of Bordeaux where it thrives on the well-drained gravel-rich soils producing tannic wines with piercing blackcurrant fruits that develop complex cedarwood and cigar box nuances when fully mature.
The grape is widely planted in California where Cabernet Sauvignon based wines are distinguished by their rich mixture of cassis, mint, eucalyptus and vanilla oak. It is planted across Australia and with particular success in Coonawarra where it is suited to the famed Terra Rossa soil. In Italy barrique aged Cabernet Sauvignon is a key component in Super Tuscans such as Tignanello and Sassicaia, either on its own or as part of a blend with Sangiovese.