2018 was such a momentous vintage all around, but it was especially magical “Up Valley.” The one acre La Place Vineyard, located at the southern end of the Calistoga AVA, truly excelled. The gravelly soils here create a wine with huge aromatic personality and ultra-fine tannins, and the steady warmth and sunshine of the vintage worked wonders. Aromas of marionberry, blueberry, black cherry, dark chocolate, anise, cured tobacco, French oak spice and a whiff of sage blast from the glass. There is a brightness combined with depth that is striking. In the mouth, one finds a suave, seamless, rich and layered classic Cabernet with inner-mouth perfume and a plush texture. The finish is detailed, long and rich, with none of the desiccated characteristics of the hot years. The impression is pure, delicious fruit. 195 cases were produced from 8 new French oak barrels.