2013 Morlet "Morlet Estate" St. Helena Cabernet Sauvignon

SKU #1259392 97 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 From Luc Morlet's own estate just north of St. Helena, the 2013 Morlet Estate comes across like a first-growth Pauillac. Again 100% Cabernet Sauvignon with creamy blackcurrants and blackberry fruit, some licorice, graphite, and background oak, the wine displays excellent minerality, superb fruit intensity, and a multi-dimensional mouthfeel. It should drink well for at least 25-30 years.  (12/2015)

K&L Notes

Robert Parker writes: "Luc Morlet, whose brother Nicolas Morlet is the principal winemaker at Peter Michael Winery, preceded his brother, but has his own winery just north of St. Helena and the Culinary Institute of America. It sits adjacent to Route 29 in a beautiful old building from the late 1800s. Morlet, who hails from the Champagne region of France, is on a hot streak in terms of the quality of the exquisite wines he=s producing. This is an extraordinary lineup of Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Pinot Noir and possibly the finest 100% Cabernet Franc ever made in California, his Force de la Nature. Morlet is hoping to use about 70% or more estate-grown fruit, as he has been busy acquiring property and now has his estate up to 24 acres. Luc Morlet produces three cuvées of Chardonnay, one from the Sonoma Coast, one from Goldridge soils, and the third a selection of his finest barrels, the Coup de Coeur. All of them are based around the old Wente clone of Chardonnay, as that seems to be the favorite of top-quality Chardonnay winemakers throughout California. The 2013 Chardonnays are finally in bottle, and they are showing even better than I predicted last year. They are incredibly great Chardonnays with long lives ahead of them."

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Price: $179.99
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Cabernet Sauvignon and Blends

- Cabernet Sauvignon has come a long way from its role as a blending varietal, however dominant, in the wines of Bordeaux. Today it is the most planted red varietal in the world. Identified as a descendent of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc, the late-ripening Cabernet Sauvignon needs to be planted in warmer climates to fully ripen. Its small berries can easily be identified for their distinctive blue color, thick skins and high tannins. And while the varietal has its own definitive characteristics: green pepper-like aromas and black currant flavors among them, it is perhaps most prized for its ability to convey terroir, vintage and winemaking. A relatively new varietal, Cabernet Sauvignon started making inroads into the wines of the Médoc and Graves in the late-18th century. Today it is also dominant in the up-and-coming Entre-Deux-Mers region of Bordeaux and can also be found in Southwest France. It is the companion varietal to Sangiovese in Italy's Super Tuscans and is planted all over Europe, stretching to lesser-known winegrowing regions like Russia and Lebanon. In the Americas Cabernet Sauvignon has found champions in every nook and cranny of California and among winemakers in Washington, where it complements plantings of Merlot. In South America, Cab thrives in Chile, but can also be found in smaller amounts in Argentina and even in Mexico.

United States

- When people consider domestic wine, they normally think about the state of California. The fine viticultural Region within California, including the Napa Valley, Sonoma, Santa Cruz Mountains, Mendocino and Santa Barbara, are capable of growing grapes of world-class quality. But there's plenty of fabulous wine coming from other states, too. Oregon, Washington and New York are also causing eyebrows (and glassware) to be raised around the world.


- With the explosive growth that California's wine industry has seen the past several years, it's easy to view winemaking and grape growing in the Golden State as a recent phenomenon. And while it's true that California's viticultural history is brief compared to several European countries, this state's roots date back well over 200 years. Due to the enormous response to California wine within the United States and worldwide, there are thousands of excellent and diverse wines being produced within the state each year.
Specific Appellation:

Napa Valley

- America's most famous wine region, which encompasses a varied geographical territory running about 20 miles long from the San Francisco Bay northward to the foot of Mount St. Helena. Napa's great diversity, both in terms of climate and terroir, has led to the creation of a number of smaller AVAs like Stags Leap District, Rutherford, Howell Mountain, Oakville and Mount Veeder, among others. Cabernet and chardonnay still reign supreme, but just about everything under the sun is grown in Napa Valley, in quality levels ranging from $2 jug wine to $500 a bottle California cab.