Wine Review: 2010 Chateau Montelena Cabernet Sauvignon Calistoga


2010 Chateau Montelena Cabernet Sauvignon Calistoga

Meet this week's wine, the 2010 Chateau Montelena Cabernet Sauvignon Calistoga. This is one of the first ever wine purchases from Jolene's first wine visit in Napa Valley. This is a beautiful and historic estate near Calistoga, CA and the wine is known for a "classic," "old world" style featuring ripe California fruit. This wine is not for folks who like a big, bold, highly extracted red wine. However, if you like a more subtle red wine with higher acidity and red fruit characteristics of Cabernet Sauvignon, then this could be your wine. Here are our tasting notes:

Appearance: Clear, medium intensity ruby, lightly stained tears.
Aroma: clean condition, medium intensity, red and black cherry, strawberry and blackberry, cinnamon, cedar, herbs, leather. Still developing.
Palate: dry, medium (+) acidity, medium tannin, medium (+) alcohol, medium body, well balanced, medium (+) finish.
Conclusions: very good quality, can drink now but has potential for aging. Premium wine (over $30).

The wine went well with a grilled pork chop and coleslaw.

Fifteen Recommended Wineries in Napa and Sonoma

Looking for a little amusement park in your wine tour experience? Visit Castello di Amorosa, "The Castle of Love" in Napa Valley! After ten years of traveling in Napa, we visited this castle for the first time earlier this year and we've just reviewed it in our wine travel blog. Check out what we have to say about this faux-European castle right in the middle of Napa's oldest vineyards! Link in our bio to read the review!
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Five Large Wineries:

Each of these five large wineries produces over a million bottles of wine per year. Because their wines are widely distributed in the United States, you can experience the tasting without feeling obliged to buy something to take home. These wineries either work with many varieties and have many “brands” at different price points,  or they focus on one or two wines made in large volume.

In Napa:

Beringer: California’s oldest continuously operating winery.

Hall Wines: Nestled in the Diamond Mountain District of Napa Valley.

Robert Mondavi: Four decades of award-winning winemaking.

Stag’s Leap: Beautiful architecture, gorgeous vineyards, and underground caves!

In Sonoma:

Jordan: A beautiful winery-chateau in the French style.

Ridge Vineyards Winery Tour Oak Barrel.jpg

Five Medium Wineries:

Typically, these wineries have been in business for 30 or more years.

In Napa:

Chappellet: Chappellet’s Pritchard Hill is a stunning setting for tasting wine.

Montelena: The winery boasts a unique stone chateau resembling an English gothic castle.

Opus One: Unique architecture paired with beautiful scenery and wine.

In Sonoma:

Ridge: Sip wine in the presence of gorgeous, 115-year-old vines.

Merry Edwards: Merry Edwards is a female vintner making Pinot Noirs with a sense of place.


Five Smaller Wineries:

These wineries generally make less than 250,000 bottles of wine per year.

In Napa:

Tor: Family-owned, with a focus on single-vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay wines.

Pina: Family-owned for eight generations! A small Napa Valley treasure.

Corison: Artisanal, age-worthy Cabernet Sauvignon by winegrower Cathy Corison.

In Sonoma:

Williams Selyem: Highly-prized Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Zinfandel.

Peter Michael: Nine family-owned mountain vineyards and thirty-five years of handcrafted wines.

Interested in traveling to Napa and Sonoma? Check out our guide to California’s wine country!