Earlier, we shared a little about our Cave Collection, and today we are focusing one of those Cave Collection vintages, also poured on our current tours and tastings: the 1996 Far Niente Cave Collection Cabernet Sauvignon.
The decade of the 1990s brought forth a string of heralded Napa Cabernet vintages. Year after year, it seemed another “vintage of the decade” was named. But a few exemplary vintages were lost in the shadows of their predecessors, yet they still provided truly beautiful wines. 1991 comes to mind, coming on the heels of the 1990 vintage; 1996—the vintage we’re with which we’re kicking off the Cave Collection series –was sandwiched in between the great 1995 and 1997 bottlings. Age, however, introduces subtlety, nuance and bottle bouquet that’s not present in young wines, and it’s worth tasting what’s in your cellar now, to see if your favorites from the ‘90s have changed.
The 1996 vintage hails from a typical growing season, with moderate spring rainfall and even temperatures throughout the summer. This wine was picked in mid-September, which was more usual for the time, and was in concert with our farming and harvesting methods. The blend of Cabernet, Cabernet Franc and Merlot points to the evolution of the Far Niente Cabernet blend. Today, we use no Merlot and just a fraction of Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. While we always stay true to our house style—elegant wines of beautiful fruit, depth and silky tannins—we are always looking to improve our farming, harvesting and winemaking methods while responding to what Mother Nature provides each growing season.
Keep and eye on our blog for upcoming posts about the 1996 Cabernet, including updated tasting notes from Nicole. If you are in Napa Valley over the next few weeks, be sure to call ahead for an appointment. The 1996 Far Niente Cave Collection Cab is currently featured on our tours and tastings.
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