|Cabernet Sauvignon||Napa Valley||2008|
The aptly named Rockpile AVA is a remote, high-country growing area, where the unforgiving terrain and soils stress the vines into ripening. The Resolution is produced with grapes from the Branham Obidian vineyard but also from vineyards in Napa's St. Helena and Yountville. On the nose, aromas of dark fruits, menthol, mocha and spice abound. The wine is full-bodied, rich and exquisitely balanced on the palate with inviting flavors of black currant, camphor, mint and graphite. The Resolution is ready to drink but has the pedigree to age gracefully.
Black cherry, black currant, black plum, violet, lavender, mocha and mint.
Before founding his eponymous winery in 1994, Gary Branham worked at wineries around the world, from New Zealand and Australia to Napa and Sonoma. Branham studied enology and viticulture at U.C. Davis and grows 80 percent of all the fruit that he uses in his wines. The ranch consists of 240 acres of wilderness located in northwest Sonoma County and was once part of the historic Rockpile Ranch, which in turn was once part of an 18,000 acre sheep and cattle ranch. He is one of a handful of growers pushing the paradigm of ultra-premium hilltop fruit. Within a decade of planting, grapes from this area became so highly prized that the Rockpile AVA was established.
Napa Cabernet Sauvignon often walks a fine line between fruity and tannic, and the Resolution offers a jammy contrast to my suggestion for Grilled Flank Steak with Salsa Cruda. It is also well suited for rare grilled steak and slow-cooked meats like short ribs.
The actors on the TV series "Bonanza" bought Rockpile Ranch in 1986, but lost it all to foreclosure in about a year.
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