Today marks the first release of Opus One 2013 – a stellar vintage for one of the Napa Valley’s most iconic wines. Started in 1978 by Baronne Philippe de Rothschild and Robert Mondavi, the operation has come a long way since the early days when all fruit was brought in from the To Kalon vineyard. Today fruit is selected from four parcels of prime estate owned vineyards in Oakland, each planted with traditional Bordeaux varieties, before being transported to one of Napa’s most recognisable and distinctive wineries. Wine-making follows traditional methods with an average of 18 days skin contact before 18 months ageing in new French Oak.
The 2013 vintage in Napa was an ideal growing season, producing wines that are a little cooler in character than the preceding vintage. While it was very dry, temperatures remained moderate throughout the summer. The resulting wine, tasted last week, is looking exceptionally promising with a sense of constrained, controlled power that is a hallmark of 2013. A corset of fine grained tannins surround a deep and chiselled mid-palate profile that is more dark hedgerow, cherry and roasted beans than sweet cassis. On the finish fine dark chocolate, stones, minerals alongside a touch of sweet tobacco and liquorice. It is absolutely not a fruit bomb, and all the better for it. The final blend is 79% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Cabernet Franc, 6% Petit Verdot, 6% Merlot and 2% Malbec and harvest lasted from 5th September until 5th October.
“Dark cherries, plums, smoke, licorice, new leather and menthol race across the palate in the 2013 Opus One. Firm yet also voluptuous, the 2013 has it all. The combination of fruit and structure is superb. Today, the 2013 reminds me of the 2010 when it was young, especially in its energy and pure power. The flavor remain quite primary, one of the signatures of this great Napa Valley vintage” 94-96+, Antonio Galloni, Vinous. Drink 2020-2038
“The greatest Opus ever. Terrific aromas of crushed black currants, blueberries and flowers with hints of sweet tobacco. Roses continue to exude opulence and class. Full body, superb balance of ultra-fine tannins and vibrant acidity. Complex aftertaste of black fruits and citrus fruit. Extremely persistent. So approachable now and enjoyable. But will be even better in 2019 and beyond. 79% cabernet sauvignon, 7% cabernet franc, 6% merlot, 6% petit verdot, 2% malbec. This will always be beautiful to drink.” 100 Points, James Suckling.
In addition to Opus One there is also a second wine called Overture; a multi-vintage blend produced to be ready to drink upon release that accounts for just 10% of production. We haven’t been able to taste it so cannot comment on the quality but the price is £1000 per dozen. If this is of interest please contact your account manager and we will attempt to secure you an allocation.
Please note that there is currently no stock available