2010 Emerson Brown Cabernet Sauvignon III Michaels Estate Oakville Napa Valley
 
We're sorry, this offer is sold out.
Read about wines still available for purchase »


Keith Emerson & Brian Brown Oakville Bench Cat Out of the Bag

On paper, it's the most talented young Cabernet-making team in Napa Valley. Keith Emerson spends his days running the roost at Vineyard 29 in St. Helena, fashioning 95-97 point single-vineyard bottlings off of Chuck McMinn's "Aida" and "Estate" Vineyards. Brian Brown's daytime digs are over at Round Pond, where he crafts the $100/bottle Reserve Cabernet that ranks among the greatest of Rutherford.

Both Emerson and Brown credit their mentor, the inimitable Philippe Melka (Bryant Family, Dalla Valle, Roy Estate, Hundred Acre etc), for the stylish black fruit elegance of their Cabernets, each sumptuously chiseled out of valley floor volcanic rock.

Still, since the first release in 2005, the tiny production of Emerson Brown Cabernet Sauvignon, drawn primarily off the rocky soils of famed III Michaels Estate in prime time Oakville, has been Napa Valley's best-kept secret. With the release of this phenomenal 2010, Emerson Brown won't be a secret any longer.

In the December 2012 issue, Parker's Wine Advocate described the 2010 vintage as "epic" -- an opinion shared by both Emerson and Brown -- comparing it favorably with every harvest since the monumental 2007. Still, in our view, there is some inconsistency in quality in what would prove to be the coldest summer in recent Napa Valley history.

"By last June, we were already way behind," Keith would tell us. "The set was small, and after short harvests in 2008 and 2009, those who were farming for quantity were really worried. People were pulling leaves, exposing their clusters, trying to accelerate maturation. They ended up paying for it."

When the heat spikes came in July and August, the exposed clusters blistered. But over at Vineyard 29 in St. Helena, at Round Pond in Rutherford, and Emerson Brown's prized III Michaels Vineyard in Oakville, we're told the canopies were left intact. The mercury dropped. Temperatures remained largely mild for the remainder of the summer, providing for an exceptionally long growing season, bringing that tiny Oakville harvest, from which they'd fashion a scant 320 cases, to magical phenolic maturity.

Deep purple in color, with lush, finely chiseled aromas of fresh blackberries and blueberries, gently tinged with new wood cedar. Rich and sumptuous on the attack, also brilliantly sculpted like all the great 2010s, marrying broad black fruit density with superb acid and ripe tannin vibrancy. This is a brilliant effort, far and away the finest ever from Emerson and Brown, a single vineyard Oakville Cabernet Sauvignon that's drinking beautifully out of the gate. Still, patience will reap dividends.


Tasting Notes

2010 Emerson Brown Cabernet Sauvignon III Michaels Estate Oakville Napa Valley
"Deep purple black in color, with finely chiseled aromas of blackberry and blueberry, gently laced with new wood cedar. Rich and sumptuous on the attack, carefully sculpted like all the great 2010s, marrying broad black fruit density with superb acid and ripe tannin vibrancy. Drinking beautifully and elegantly right of the gate, but 3-5 years patience will pay ample rewards. Superb."
-- WineAccess Travel Log

By law, wine may ONLY be shipped to the following states: AZ, CA, CO, CT, DC, FL, GA, IA, ID, IL, KS, LA, ME, MI, MN, MO, NC, NE, NH, NM, NV, OH, OR, PA, SC, TN, VA, VT, WA, WI, WV, WY.