“Black Chocolate, Cedar Wood, Blackberry and Cassis”
The 94-point 2013 Rocca Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Collinetta Vineyard landed with a splash in James Suckling’s Top 100 Reds of Napa Valley — about 20 spots above cult-favorite Staglin, which goes for a whopping $240/bottle. This “beautiful” and “full-bodied” Napa Cabernet is evidence of what prompted Robert Parker to marvel at 2013’s “across the board excellence” in Napa’s “game-changer” 2013 vintage, loaded as the “Collinetta” is with classic Napa traits of “black chocolate, cedar wood, blackberry and cassis.” Owners Eric Grigsby and Mary Rocca took quite a gamble — and took on quite a challenge — when they bought the 12-acre Collinetta parcel on a rugged, out-of-the-way perch in what is now the Coombsville AVA. Here’s your chance for a piece of the payoff, crafted by a protégé of Napa legend Ehren Jordan (formerly of Turley).
Back when we offered the 2007 Rocca Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Collinetta Vineyard, we wondered: Was this Napa’s finest vintage in 30 years? Needless to say, we wrote that question in 2012 — just before 2013 permanently raised the bar for Napa Cabernet.
A 2013 vintage that had Parker grasping at adjectives like “epic” and “awesome” brought out the best in Napa Valley’s most talented winemakers, and Rocca’s Paul Colantuoni learned from the best. His resume includes stints with legendary winemakers on both sides of the pond, including Failla’s Ehren Jordan, Tuscan legend Carlo Ferrini, and Frédéric and Daniel Brunier at legendary Rhône estate Domaine du Vieux Télégraphe.
Along the way, Colantuoni learned patience, which comes in handy at Collinetta: The cool southern-Napa Coombsville AVA affords the Cabernet an extra-long growing season. Then the fruit is gently destemmed and the wine rested for 21 months in 80% new oak. We’ll say what we said about the then-unequaled 2007: It shines now, and will after a long slumber in the cellar.