Our Ghost Pines 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon has ripe fruit flavors from its Napa Valley Cabernet grapes that give the wine a free-spirited, yet elegant character. Cabernet grapes from Sonoma County add juicy red and black fruit flavors along with a disciplined structural foundation. The blend of these two regions creates aromas of dark fruit jam, sweet nuts and black pepper that meld with dark berry fruit flavors. The palate is dense and chewy without being overly astringent.
Named after the Ghost Pines Vineyard purchased in 1964 by Napa’s historic Louis M. Martini Winery, Ghost Pines produces unique and contemporary wines from some of California’s premier appellations. Winemaker Aaron Piotter enjoys the freedom to choose the best grapes he can find, regardless of AVA. Inspired by the free-form character of its namesake tree, Ghost Pines embodies the progressive spirit of California winemaking – "excellence has no boundaries."
In cool growing seasons it really helps to use early-ripening varieties in a blend. For our 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon, we used a large portion of grapes from Sun Lake vineyard, which is situated in the Pope Valley. During the summer, Pope Valley reaches much higher temperatures than the Napa Valley floor. We also selected a portion of our Cabernet from our namesake Ghost Pines Vineyard in Chiles Valley, where rich gravelly loam soils combine with warm summer days tempered by cooling fog for pronounced, well-structured flavors. Almost 12 percent Merlot was blended with our Cabernet to bump up the ripe characters that we strive for in this wine.
In keeping with our roots, 49 percent of the final blend was macerated, fermented and aged the Louis M. Martini Winery. A legendary Cabernet Sauvignon producer, the Louis M. Martini Winery is able to bring some real benefit to our Ghost Pines Cabernet. We keep vineyard blocks and areas separate for a fair amount of time before blending. An iterative process, we began blending by combining vineyards from similar areas in the winter after harvest and continued through spring. Finally, in summer we assembled the different area, which ultimately led to this blend of 70 percent Napa and the balance from Sonoma at 30 percent. Following final assembly, this wine was allowed to age until bottling, which created a well-integrated blend bursting with flavor. Aging occurred in two types of French oak: one imparted hints of mocha, while the other provided toasted oak notes and added density to the mouthfeel.
70% Napa County
30% Sonoma County