Young Inglewood farms its estate using a mix of organic and sustainable practices, and this particular cuvée blends a little Merlot and Cabernet Franc into the base Cabernet Sauvignon. Fruit was hand-harvested at night, then hand sorted and open-top fermented. The wine enjoyed a twenty-two-month élevage, with fourteen months in new oak barrels followed by eight months in neutral.
It is rare to find a Napa Cabernet that demonstrates such balance and precision at such a young age. It is not dominated by oak; the oak simply adds lustre. It is not dominated by fruit; fruit is a core, but not the main point. There is savoriness, there are herbs and a suggestion of deep woods. The texture is like buffed suede, well-loved.
I served it with a rustic onion tart dressed in earthy cheese and it was superlative. You could also, of course, pour it with beef, pork, or poultry. Or picnic sandwiches.
The wine reminds me of forest and field, vineyard and orchard, late afternoons, leather, mountains and sun. What more could anyone ask?
2012 Young Inglewood Cabernet Sauvignon St. Helena
14.8% abv | $90 (sample); 278 cases made