past vintages

2015 Cresta Velia Cabernet Sauvignon

Here we go again. It seems as though I’m saying the same thing year after year. Another excellent vintage from Howell Mountain. And once again it’s true. The wine shows deep purple color concentration with both sweet and savory aromatics on the nose. Blackberries, currants, freshly turned soil and black licorice attack your nostrils from the glass. Rich, broad and full bodied as this wine  is the vineyard once again provides the balancing influence of acidity and tannin and helps usher in the finishing notes of roasted meats, cigar box, fennel and more black and blue fruit. If 2012 and 2013 Cresta Velia had a baby it would be the 2015. Incredible concentration from the 2013 with generous portions of fruit from 2012. And although you are not supposed to have a favorite child, if I had to choose I think it would be 2015...until we release the 2016.

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2016 Cresta Velia Pinot Noir

We had to push the bottling date back from August to December, due to circumstances beyond our control, and after tasting the results we will continue to bottle the Pinot in December. This  extra time in barrel has helped create a more complex and savory wine that still retains its freshness. The wine is made of equal parts clone 115 and 667 and has the color of pale to medium ruby with a nose of spearmint, pipe tobacco, earth and crushed raspberries. The mid palate is dense and medium bodied with generous amounts of red fruit, spice and cherry cola and supported by fully ripe and welcoming tannins. Our most serious effort thus far from the Sonoma Coast.

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2014 Cresta Velia Cabernet Sauvignon

Early to bud and early to ripen, the 2014 vintage was our third drought year in a row. Dry, even temperatures marched the grapes along at a steady clip all year and created a wine with beautifully integrated fruit, acidity, and tannin.

Dense and dark magenta in color, this is a lithe and energetic vintage with lifted aromatics and a purity of fruit that lights up the medium-bodied tannin structure. The nose promises fresh black fruits, cherries and a touch of graphite, and the palate completely delivers. Juicy blackberry, plum, and bright cherry explode in the mouth, and develop into savory notes of baked black fruit and fresh pencil shavings on the mid-palate. Eagle Summit Vineyard’s signature eucalyptus appears on the back palate to brighten the fruit, showing fragrant peppermint and warm, toasty spices through the finish. Whether you open it young or wait a few decades, this vintage does Howell Mountain proud--sophisticated and smart, with a rustic wild side.

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2013 Cresta Velia Cabernet Sauvignon

With five vintages under our belt, I can safely say this is the best of the bunch.  All the components of the 2013 are a slight step up from the 2012.  Deeper color, more fruit and concentration along with a bit more structure has led to our most serious wine to date. Dark purple in color with massive aromatics of blue and black fruits, plum and fennel bring you to the rich mouth coating finish of blackberry, earth and bakers chocolate.  If you like your Cabernets young, this will need a healthy decant.  Happy drinking. 

"notes of cassis and blackberry liqueur, some licorice and underlying earthy notes.  It is full-bodied, rich, dense and super-impressive for a relatively new producer."    Robert Parker, Wine Advocate                                                                                      

Wine Advocate Score 95

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2014 Cresta Velia Pinot Noir

The newest addition to the Cresta Velia lineup is our Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir from a small vineyard near the town of Occidental and a mile from Harrison Grade Road.
Red fruit and rose petals are the first aromas out of the glass, although with a bit of time they morph into freshly tilled earth, raw mushrooms and a hint of chamomile.  Raspberry and first of the season strawberries on the palate move towards a loamy middle with generous amounts of acidity and a touch of baking spice on the finish. Over the next few years this wine will add weight in bottle making it even more complex and interesting.  In it’s youth, it will benefit greatly from a hearty decant and a well cooked meal.

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2012 Cresta Velia Cabernet Sauvignon

2012 was another really good year on Howell Mountain. After the challenging 2011 vintage, the classic growing season of 2012 was a welcome change. The absence of late season rains allowed for optimal hang time on the vine helping concentrate flavors and manage tannins in the vineyard. Our 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon is as seamless and balanced as the growing season itself. Unlike it’s predecessor the 2012 is more purple than black with a rich and full bodied mid palate, round mouthfeel and finishes with the classic Howell Mountain spice.

Wine Advocate Score 93

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2011 Cresta Velia Cabernet Sauvignon

The third release from Cresta Velia is an Inky black wine with a concentrated nose of spicy black fruit, which gives way to blueberry, eucalyptus and bakers chocolate. Notes of black cherry, crushed stone and violets create the rich, complex, mid-palate that finishes with the lively acidity, ripe tannins and structure you expect from Howell Mountain.

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2010 Cresta Velia Cabernet Sauvignon

The second release from Cresta Velia begins with dark berry fruit, violets and Howell Mountain spice. Black and blue fruit concentrate and a rich meaty quality comprise a dense palate that buffers ripe tannins and a full complement of acidity for a long mouth coating finish. 

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