Chateau Montelena Winery, originally called A.L. Tubbs winery after its founder Alfred Tubbs, was established in 1882, and was originally intended as a barrel-aging facility. The renaissance of the winery, under the leadership of James Barrett, began in 1972 with the replanting of the Estate vineyard. In 1976, Chateau Montelena put California at the forefront of the wine world. Pitted against four White Burgandies and six California Chardonnays, Chateau Montelena’s 1973 Chardonnay was rated the best by a team of who’s-who of the French wine and food establishment at the Inter-Continental Hotel in Paris. This actualized the Chateau Montelena philosophy: “Make the best, period”.
Today the tradition continues. with Jim Barrett’s son, Bo, winemaker at Chateau Montelena beginning in 1982, is now its Master Winemaker. After more than three decades of experience with the same vineyards and varieties, the Montelena Estate Cabernet Sauvignon and Napa Valley Chardonnay are recognized as world-class.
With its continued effort to integrate tradition with modern day winemaking methods, Chateau Montelena has maintained and established new practices that not only improve the quality of their celebrated wines, but also uphold and support sustainability. Chateau Montelena is both a Napa Green Certified Winery and a Napa Green Certified Land. They utilize organic farming methods to promote the health of the soil and ultimately preserve the land's productivity. In addition, they also make use of Solar panels to help sustain energy needs.
Chateau Montelena Chardonnay
Napa Valley 2014
Ripe peach, pear and cloves dominate the nose amidst a flurry of floral and honeysuckle notes. In addition, there’s a wonderful fullness and weight on the palate punctuated by ripe melon, green apple, and fresh citrus. The oak contribution remains subtle with a hint of vanilla and baking spice. The density of the wine is readily apparent as grilled pineapple, lychee, and a rich creaminess linger.
Rich and Creamy
Extra Dry- No sweetness perceived; well-rounded with balanced acidity
Antonio Galloni (Vinous) – 91 points
“The 2014 Chardonnay is bright, focused and finely-cut. Lemon peel, white flowers, mint and white pepper give the 2014 much of its lifted, mid-weight personality. As always, the Montelena Chardonnay is done in a brisk, dry style, with blocked malolactic fermentation."
Red Bordeaux Blend: 85.5% Cabernet Sauvignon
13% Merlot, 1% Cabernet Franc, 0.5% Petit Verdot.
On the nose this wine exhibits blackberry jam, vanilla, and all spice leaps out of the glass yet gracefully yield to notes of dried plum, coffee bean, and perfume with some patience. It is deceptively soft up front with fresh strawberry and raspberry immediately apparent. These instantly give way though to density and concentration of flavor as the tannins and acidity come into focus. The finish is elegant and balanced with the aforementioned ripe flavors and textures of the vintage comingled with bright acid, cocoa, crème de menthe, and chalky minerality.
Chateau Montelena Cabernet Sauvignon
Napa Valley 2013
Bordeaux Blend (Red)
Smooth and Supple
Extra Dry- No sweetness; Clean, crisp and acidic finish
Napa Valley, California USA
Antonio Galloni (Vinous) – 91 points
"The 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon is dark, fleshy and seductive, but also light on its feet and gracious. Black cherry, plum, rose petal, smoke, tobacco, licorice and cedar are some of the signatures. Classic and medium in body, this tasty Montelena Cabernet Sauvignon will drink well with minimal cellaring. Because of its mid-weight structure, Montelena's Cabernet is one of the more approachable wines of the vintage, not to mention a real beauty."
Wilfred Wong (Wine.com) – 90 points
“The 2013 Chateau Montelena Cabernet Sauvignon shows ripe fruit and smooth textures on the palate. A lovely example of solid tannin management, this wine pairs well with roast game as well as grilled steak. Drinks well now.
(Tasted: October 3, 2016, San Francisco, CA USA)"