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Praise for Ladera Wines

Ladera’s Wines are Recognized as Benchmarks for Their Depth, Elegance and Aging Potential

Ladera has been satisfying the most discerning palettes in homes, restaurants and corporate environments since 1998. We are honored to have been recognized as the 6th most respected wine brand in America’s fine dining restaurants by Wine & Spirits Magazine. Those who know California Cabernet Sauvignon understand the acclaim for depth, character and complexity that Ladera consistently establishes the benchmark for.

Cabernet Sauvignon – Howell Mountain Reserve

2019 Ladera Howell Mountain Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon

95+ points – The Wine Advocate
“Sourced from a single vineyard on Howell Mountain, Ladera’s 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve spent 22 months in 93% new French oak. Marked by scents of mocha, cedar, dark loam, blueberry, cassis and a hint of pine, it’s full-bodied, rich and concentrated. Long and velvety on the finish, this is massive stuff, ripe yet not overdone, with a couple of decades ahead of it.” – Joe Czerwinski

94 points – JEB DUNNUCK
“The 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve comes all from Howell Mountain and spent 22 months in barrels. Its dense purple hue is followed by a serious, impressive 2019 with ample blackcurrant fruit as well as leafy herbs, iron, baking chocolate, and spicy nuances. It’s rich and textured, with the classic sexiness of the 2019 vintage buffered nicely by ample Howell Mountain tannins and structure. I like it today yet see no reason it shouldn’t evolve for 15 years or more.”

2018 Ladera Howell Mountain Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon

95 points – Owen Bargreen
““A resounding success from this outstanding vintage, the very dense and heady ‘Reserve’ Cabernet Sauvignon is a stunning new bottling that is already beautifully evolved. Once on the nose this exudes class with sandalwood notes alongside huckleberry cordial, graphite and freshly tilled soils. The palate is dense and rich with a seamless mouthfeel and wonderful grip from the refined tannins. Layered with violets, blackberries, wet rock and copious minerals, this is really good to consume now and over the next twenty years. Give this an hour in the decanter before consuming. Drink 2023-2042.”

94 points – Wine & Spirits Magazine

94 points & Publisher Pick – The Tasting Panel and Somm Journal
“The mineral rich, volcanic soils of Howell Mountain’s 1,600-plus elevation vineyards are demonstrated in a rich powerhouse of a wine. Concentrated aromas of violets loop into a flavor profile of dusty plum skin, tongue-licking slate and soil, and chocolate espresso. Tannins are evident and acidity is “well spoken.”

2017 Ladera Howell Mountain Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon

97 points – The Tasting Panel, Meredith May
“Grown at elevations exceeding 1,600 feet on mineral-rich, volcanic soil, this enchanting 22-month, French-oak aged red possesses a streamlined texture, determined structure, and inherent acidity. Black cherry, anise, and plum pudding paint a midnight sky, with a moonlit base of silky tannins.”

2016 Ladera Howell Mountain Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon

97 points – The Tasting Panel
“Spanish for hillside, Ladera is indeed a wonderful representation of mountain fruit, and this red from Howell Mountain defines the commitment. Winemaker Jade Barrett refers to 2016 as ‘one of those classic vintages in Napa Valley, with no serious heat spikes or threat of rain; our Cabernet Sauvignon was able to mature gradually.’ And with that maturity, luxury comes in a blissfully generous array of black and blue fruit. While dark chocolate paints the palate, its sturdy tannins are bound with a fine acidity and a balanced richness.”

96 points – Robert Whitley, December 2020
“A big, mountain-grown cabernet from Napa generally takes a number of years to come around. That means you typically need to cellar it for a couple of years after purchase. Ladera does that for you, aging its reserve cabernet prior to release. Hence, the 2016 is now available when other wineries are selling the 2018 vintage. The 2016 from Ladera is a bold wine, powerful and rich in dark fruits, with impressive palate weight and a very long midpalate and finish.”

93 points – Wine Spectator’s Insider Weekly: Outstanding; A wine of superior character and style
“This sports a very solid core of cassis, cherry puree and plum reduction that is both dense and bright, with racy red licorice and sweet spice notes filling in from behind. There’s a sappy feel on the finish, with tongue-coating fruit and grip, but this shows the cut and drive for balance. Best from 2022 through 2036.”

93 points – Winfried Wong’s Recommendations
“Comprised of the winery’s most exceptional lots of the vintage; the grapes were hand-sorted, gently de-stemmed without crushing, and cold soaked for 7 days to extract maximum fruit characteristics; wine was aged in 95% new premium French oak barrels for 22 months before the final blend was assembled. Estate Grown, Cellared & Bottled by Ladera Vineyards, St. Helena, CA; Deep garnet color; black fruit, dried earth, savory spices, quite rich; full bodied, firm and built on the palate; dry, medium acidity, very good balance; black fruit flavors, earth, oak, quite intense; medium finish, firm aftertaste.”

Legendary Cabernet Sauvignon – South Florida Reporter
“Howell Mountain produces some of the most respectable cabernets in Napa Valley. This powerful version has fine tannins, hedonistically rich black cherry, cassis and blackberry flavors. For me, Howell Mountain wines tend to have really rich, intense blackberry and mulberry fruit flavors, and the tannins can range from very burly and hard to relatively soft depending on where the wines are grown and how the grapes are treated in the winery.”
Wine, etc.: Can a $200 bottle of wine be a bargain? These eight are proof,
Tom Marquardt and Patrick Darr, December 2020

“Exploring the Cabernet Sauvignon of Napa Valley” – Forbes
Discussing Napa Valley’s mountain appellations as if they’re some sort of monolith is a recipe for over-generalization if you’re not careful. After all, the region’s main mountain AVAs are found over a broad swath of Napa, and boast remarkably different geological origins, soil compositions, expositions, and micro-climates. In addition, the regulations that define those AVAs differ greatly in terms of how they approach the issue of altitude.

Still, for all the often dramatic divergence between, say, Atlas Peak and Diamond Mountain—they’re nearly 30 miles apart, and the former is east of Napa city whereas the latter is west of Calistoga, with all the geological and geographical differences one would expect—so-called ‘mountain wines’ are an increasingly important segment of the world of Napa Valley Cabs. Much of that, it seems, is because of the characteristics that they have in common.

‘The main difference is that most mountain sites have free-draining soils, meaning rainwater or irrigation water wicks away from the vines and consequently the berries are often much smaller (as there is less liquid in them) than berries on the valley floor, farmed on deeper soils with better water-holding capacity,’ explained Steve Rogstad, winemaker for Brandlin Estate.

‘On Mount Veeder,’ he also pointed out, ‘the vineyards are typically along the ridge lines as the slopes are often too steep and erosive for planting. This added exposure to the elements (wind, sun, diurnal temperature shifts) forces the skins to thicken in response to the environment. Since the color and tannin in red grapes are found in the skins, and mountain skins are thicker, they tend to have more tannin and color than valley floor fruit and less liquid to dissolve them in when the berries are crushed and fermented. So for me, the main difference between mountain Cabernets and other AVAs is concentration.’

Renée Ary, winemaker at Duckhorn Vineyards, agrees. ‘Yes, there’s a big difference in the tannin profile of our Howell Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon versus what we see on our valley floor Cabernets. The tannins are bigger and bolder and can be a bit edgier,’ she noted. ‘For this reason, we age our Howell Mountain Cabernet in barrel for six months longer than our other Cabernets. It also gets extra bottle aging time. The extra oak and bottle aging allows the tannins time to integrate and the wine time to soften.’

Jade Barrett, winemaker at Ladera, explained that, ‘In my experience, the soil and elevation play an integral role in both the tannin structure and natural acidity in the grapes and their resulting wines. During the summer, our mountain vineyards are often 10 [degrees] F cooler than on the valley floor and sit above the typical fog line receiving more hours of sun exposure, which lengthens the growing season. Also, the vines work harder to survive in the spare, rocky soils producing smaller, concentrated grapes. This results in a longer growing season giving the tannins time to fully mature, all while developing gorgeous flavors while retaining the vibrant natural acidity that can make a great Cabernet Sauvignon so dynamic.’

Growing grapes in the mountains has its own unique set of benefits and challenges. Braiden Albrecht, winemaker of Mayacamas, pointed out that, ‘For me, one advantage is how much variation we find both between vineyard blocks and within them. Changes in soil composition, soil chemistry, elevation, aspect etc. allow us to make wines with great complexity from a small geographic area.’ However, he continued, ‘One more recent disadvantage is wildfire risk. Hillside vineyards in many cases are remote and surrounded by forest. If a wildfire does threaten the property, it’ll be difficult for fire departments to safely defend.’

‘Mountains are not the easiest places to farm,’ said Chris Carpenter, winemaker at Cardinale, Mt. Brave, Lokoya, and other highly esteemed bottlings. He added, ‘You’re dealing with a soil profile that’s shallow.’ Also, he elaborated, ‘There’s a lack of nutrients…and water holding potential.’

‘Then,’ he went on, ‘you’ve got ridge lines, tree lines, that shade part of the vineyard’ at different times. ‘Because of the lack of nutrients and because of the lack of water, you don’t get a lot of fruit…so there’s a financial implication to that.’

Still, the effort is worth it. ‘We do it because of the intensity of these wines…the fruit that you get form the mountains, there’s a deeper concentration of flavor’ and natural acidity that stays stable for longer, Carpenter said.

Barrett concurred. ‘There are plenty of disadvantages, however, none of them affect wine quality. Mountain winegrowing is extremely labor-intensive and costly, both to plant vineyards and to farm them. Additionally, because the soils are generally very rocky, the vines naturally yield a smaller crop, which can be further impacted by spring frosts. At the same time, the ‘disadvantage’ of smaller crops can be a good thing, yielding complex and profound wines, with age-worthy structure. While growing and making mountain wines can be difficult, the rewards far outweigh the challenges.

REVIEW: “Minty and perfumed with cedar, but with a solid core of huckleberries and kirsch, before a palate that glides across the tongue with plum pudding, cracked pink peppercorns, Chinese five-spice powder, dark cocoa powder, and cinnamon stick. A beef bouillon note lingers on the finish. Plush in texture, yet boasting enough acidity to keep it fresh. This will evolve in fascinating ways well into the late-2030s.”
Forbes.com, Brian Freedman, May 17, 2021

2015 Ladera Howell Mountain Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon

97 points – Modern Wine
“This wine is just dynamite, and quite memorable. It delivers the brambly black fruit that you want from Howell Mountain, but it also has incredible grace and elegance and will age nicely for another ten years. What I really love about this wine is that it’s a top estate offering from a winery that isn’t just MORE ripe, MORE oaky, MORE alcohol. This one’s balanced, composed, and frankly, epic.”
September, 2020

97 points – Modern Wine
“Napa Valley isn’t a particularly large growing area, but the diversity of soils, mesoclimates and exposures really sets the region apart, and those variations give some of the sub-AVAs of Napa Valley distinct personalities. One of those sub-regions is Howell Mountain. Located in the NE corner of Napa Valley, Howell Mountain is in the Sierra de Napa range. A couple of the primary soil types are a blonde, dusty volcanic ‘tufa’ or decomposed ash, and more red, iron-rich clay soils. Both types are low in organic matter, so they deliver the small, intensely flavored clusters of fruit that you expect to get from mountain vineyards.”
– Great 2015 Howell Mountain Cabs from Ladera and Duckhorn, Tim Teichgraeber

96 points – The Tasting Panel
“Made with fruit grown at elevations of over 1,600 feet, this wine comprises the vintage’s best lots, which were individually aged in 100% French oak for 22 months prior to final blending. The nose is exceptionally inky and deep with black cherry and cocoa-tinged blueberry; on the palate, dark chocolate dotted with white pepper majestically melts in broad strokes.This is an assertive red, but the luscious fruit balances out the edge of its mountain bound concentration.”

95 points – Rich Cook
“I’m a big fan of Ladera’s consistency over their entire portfolio. There is always solid quality to be found, and it shines through in this reserve bottling. Focused black cherry and mixed berry fruit is accompanied by notes of crushed rock minerality, and easy oak spice adds interest and tension against the fruit. It finishes bright, with great length and clearly shows its ageworthiness. Another success! Contains 4% Petit Verdot.”

92 points – Wine Enthusiast
“This reserve-tier wine is densely concentrated in savory flavors of soy, leather and tobacco. The demure fruit leans into red currant, raspberry while structured in grippy, formidable tannin. A cellar-worthy wine, it will do well over time, expanding its reach into dark chocolate and nutmeg underpinnings; enjoy best 2025–2030.”

91 points – JamesSuckling.com
“A little one-dimensional with aromas and flavors of currants and ripe berries. Full and juicy. Shows some tension and balance in the palate. Drink now or hold”

Year’s Best US Cabernet and Blends – 90 points – Wine & Spirits
Delicious, compelling; a compelling wine of its region; a delicious, finessed expression of place
“Buxom in its supple fruit richness, this has notes of strawberries and cream along with substantial black tannins. Those tannins remain smooth, their astringency subtle, their structure sophisticated. Oak adds a toasty frame, the wine ready to take on roast game.”
– Josh Greene, December 2020

2014 Ladera Howell Mountain Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon

96 points – Rich Cook
“Howell Mountain is a great area for Cabernet Sauvignon that shows both power and elegance when hanlded correctly, as in the case of this fine bottling. Loads of complexity and depth of aroma and flavor here, with blackberry, cassis, moderate oak toast and fall spice with just a touch of dried herb flood the nose and the mouth, carried by a supple structure that promises a long life ahead. Excellent wine! Contains 3% Petit Verdot.”

94 points – Wine Enthusiast
“Superb; a great achievement”

2013 Ladera Howell Mountain Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon

96 points – Wine.com
“An incredible effort amongst the ultra-premium red wines in the world, the sleek and superbly crafted 2013 Ladera Howell Mountain Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon reaches out to the palate as few others can. The wine’s impeccable balance of elements—black currants, aromatic violets, and savory oak—takes the Cabernet Sauvignon to another level. Pair it with a Chateaubriand, and you will understand what I mean.”

91 points – Wine Advocat
“Beautiful wine from Ladera, the 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve exhibits plum, blackberry and blueberry fruit, has beautiful color saturation, medium to full body and a great deal of elegance and freshness. Drink it over the next 10-15 years.”

2012 Ladera Howell Mountain Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon

91 points – Wine Spectator
“A firm, muscular style that exhibits taut black cherry, dark berry, lead pencil, savory herb and underbrush notes. Gains on the finish. The tannins are pleasantly grainy, holding the flavors on the palate. Best from 2015 through 2026. 2,200 cases made.” – JL

90-93 points – Wine Advocate
“This is a red beauty and possibly the best wine I have yet tasted from Ladera, while this barrel sample is not quite yet in bottle, it is very promising. The wine has a dense ruby/purple color, notes of lead pencil shavings, white chocolate, cassis and blueberry, it is very perfumed, medium to full-bodied, with real purity, texture and overall balance. In many ways it cuts a hypothetical composition between a top Bordeaux and a top Napa Cabernet. This is young and should drink well in keeping with the vintage, but also hold well for 15-20 years.”

Distinguished – JancisRobinson.com
“Dusty earth and chocolate on a body of cassis on the nose. Spiced and chocolatey on the palate. Round and approachable in the mouth with soft edges. Moderate tannins and balancing acidity with a lingering, peppery finish.” – Elaine Chukan Brown, June 2016

2008 Ladera Howell Mountain Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon

Year’s Best Cabernet Sauvignon – 92 points – Wine & Spirits
“Grown at Ladera’s estate vineyards, rising from 1,600 to 1,800 feet in volcanic soils, this is an old-fashioned Howell Mountain wine. It’s pungent with dried herb tones and conifer scents, the currant flavor corseted by earthiness. The finish is smoky and warm, needing age to mellow. (1,300 cases).”

91 points – Wine Advocate
“The 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain (100% Cabernet Sauvignon) emerges from the glass with dark fruit, crushed flowers, licorice and tobacco. There is plenty of character and personality in the glass, although some rough edges remain. The fruit needs a lot of air to emerge from beneath a wall of tannins. Still, this is an excellent wine, and will deliver plenty of enjoyment, especially if it is opened well in advance. Flowers and sweet red berries add lift and brightness on a crystalline finish laced with mint, tobacco and sweet herbs. The 2008 was aged in French oak barrels, 47% new. Anticipated maturity: 2013-2023.”

2007 Ladera Howell Mountain Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon

93 points – Wine Advocate
“The most expensive offering is the 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain. A classic Howell Mountain wine, it is tannic and backward with blueberry, blackberry and floral notes intermixed with lots of minerality as well as a boatload of tannin. This is a long-term wine so forget it for 3-4 years and drink it over the following two decades.”

Cabernet Sauvignon – Lone Canyon Vineyard

2007 Ladera Lone Canyon Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon

92 points – Wine Advocate
“The 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon Lone Canyon Road is even better. Slightly more structured, which somewhat diminishes the charm found in the less expensive bottling, there is more to this cuvee. A deep ruby/purple color is followed by bright blueberry, black raspberry and black currant fruit. The wine possesses moderate tannin, medium to full body and elegance combined with flavor authority. Cellar it for several years and drink it over the following 12-15.”

2004 Ladera Lone Canyon Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon

91 points – Wine Spectator
“Firm, tight and concentrated, with a complex, well-structured mix of currant, mineral, sage and savory herb notes that are compact yet focused and also long and persistent, pushing past the chewy tannins. Best from 2010 through 2016. 1,900 cases made.” – JL

90 points – Vinous
“Good deep ruby-red. Deep, fruit-driven aromas of cassis and blueberry. Round, suave and sweet, with tangy cassis and black raspberry flavors brightened by a mineral component. Finishes with fine-grained tannins and good fat.” – Stephen Tanzer, May 2008

2003 Ladera Lone Canyon Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon

95 points – Wine & Spirits
Young vines, growing at 1,600 to 1,800 feet, have consistently produced a succulent mountain-grown cabernet since the first release. The ’03 strikes a balance between muscular tannins and classical cassis flavors. The power of this wine increases over the course of several days, and the fruit is there to sustain it for many years to come.” – J.G.

90 points – Wine Spectator
“Impeccable balance, depth and concentration, combining rich, dense currant, anise, sage and berry flavors with a mix of cedary oak and spice. Finishes with a push of fruit and ripe, firm tannins. Best from 2007 through 2012. 1,240 cases made.” – JL

2002 Ladera Lone Canyon Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon

93 points – Wine Enthusiast
Ladera has been producing ageworthy Cabernets for the last few years and this is surely one. As rich and dense in tannins as it is, it’s shockingly forward in blackberry and cherry fruit flavors, while a plethora of new French oak adds even more sweetness. The result is voluptuous now, but it should age effortlessly for at least 10 years.”
Steve Heimoff, May 2006

92 points – Wine Advocate
“This vineyard (on the hillsides near Blankiet) almost became a casualty of a major fire that broke out earlier this year. A blend of 98% Cabernet Sauvignon and 2% Petit Verdot, the 2002 Cabernet Sauvignon Lone Canyon Vineyard is a dense, earthy effort displaying hints of scorched earth, camphor, black currants, cedar, and spice. Rich, full-bodied, intense, and powerful, this masculine-styled Cabernet should be consumed over the next 10-15 years.”

92 points – Wine Spectator
“Rich and intense, with a tight, concentrated core of earthy currant, mineral, wild berry, sage and cedar. This one begs for short-term cellaring as it gracefully unfolds to reveal subtle flavor nuances, with tannins that give it a solid backbone. Best from 2007 through 2013. 1,900 cases made.” – JL

2001 Ladera Lone Canyon Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon

91 points – Wine Spectator
“Dark and supple, with a rich mineral-, blackberry- and currant-infused core of fruit flavors, turning elegant and polished, with a sense of harmony and finesse. Lots of flavors push through on the aftertaste. Best from 2004 through 2011. 815 cases made.” – JL

1999 Ladera Lone Canyon Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon

92 points – Wine Spectator
“Taut, compact style, with rich, concentrated currant, pencil lead, blackberry and anise. Beautifully focused, intense and structured, with firm but ripe tannins on the finish. Best from 2005 through 2012. 610 cases made.” – JL

90 points – Wine & Spirits
Josh Greene, December 2003

Cabernet Sauvignon – Atlas Peak

2019 Ladera Atlas Peak Cabernet Sauvignon

94 points – JEB DUNNUCK
“From a site on Atlas Peak, the 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon Atlas Peak has a great nose of black-olive laced dark fruits, tobacco leaf, chocolate, and damp earth. This rich, concentrated, full-bodied Mountain Cabernet brings a big, lush mouthful of fruit, plenty of tannins, and a great finish.”

93+ points – The Wine Advocate
“Ladera’s 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon Atlas Peak is a deep, savory effort, with scents of mocha, black olive and dark loam, plus a bit of cassis or plum. Aged in 88% new French oak, it’s full-bodied, earthy and rich, with a long, velvety finish. It should begin drinking well in a few more years and last up to two decades.” – Joe Czerwinski

Cabernet Sauvignon – High Plateau

2019 Ladera High Plateau Cabernet Sauvignon

94 points – The Wine Advocate
“Blended from high-altitude sites on the eastern side of the valley, the 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon High Plateau is a terrific effort, but there are only 98 cases in total. Cedar and vanilla accent cassis and plum on the nose, while the palate is full-bodied. It’s a big, lush, oaky wine (it aged 22 months in 80% new French oak), with rich, layered tannins, ample concentration and a long, velvety finish.” – Joe Czerwinski

Cabernet Sauvignon – Napa Valley

2019 Ladera Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

92 points – JamesSuckling.com
“Spiced dark berries, chocolate, dried herbs, hints of walnuts and moist earth. Full-bodied, firm and chewy with a dark-fruited chocolaty character. Plush and velvety with a lengthy aftertaste. Drink or hold.”

92 points – JEB DUNNUCK
“Readers looking for a big, rich mouth-filling Cabernet Sauvignon that stays nicely balanced and structured will lof the 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley, a medium to full-bodied, concentrated, impressive 2019 that’s loaded with ripe black fruits, spice, and chocolaty notes. It shines at the price and is perfect for drinking over the coming decade.”

91 points – The Wine Advocate
“Ladera’s 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon features classic mountain herb notes of sage and by leaf, plus ripe blueberry and cassis fruit. It’s medium to full-bodied but on the dry, silky side of the spectrum. It’s approachable now but firm and classic in style.” – Joe Czerwinski

2018 Ladera Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

“Cabernet Sauvignons Worth Splurging On” – Food & Wine
Ladera has been on a tear in recent years, with their reserve, Howell Mountain, and other high-end bottlings showing particularly well. Yet this one, which can be found for around $80, is also well worth a place in your collection. The tea-like tannins are flecked with flavors of sage and dried thyme, which grow more pronounced on the finish as counterpoints to coffee beans, huckleberries, and Chinese five-spice powder.
Read Full Article Here
– Brian Freedman, April 2023

96 points – Publisher’s Picks Jan/Feb 2023
“From three prestigious mountain blocks: Howell Mountain, Atlas Peak, and Pritchard Hill, with some valley floor fruit, this patchwork Cabernet Sauvignon shows off a perfume of vanilla malt, cherry pie, and a toasty twist. Creamy and concentrated, with elderberry preserves and coffee latte. The mouthfeel is streamlined and opulent with a cinnamon-cedar spice from middle to end.”

93 points – Wine.com
“Deep garnet, black color; bold black fruit and licorice in the aroma, a hint of oakiness, medium depth; medium bodied, firm and built on the palate; dry, medium acidity, very good balance; oaky flavors, black fruits, medium intensity; medium finish.”
– Wilfred Wong, (Tasted: November 16, 2022, San Francisco, CA)

93 points – Owen Bargreen
“Sourced from sites on Howell Mountain as well as Atlas Peak, Pritchard Hill and Calistoga, the 2018 ‘Napa Valley’ Cabernet Sauvignon was stored for 22 months in 81% new French oak before bottling. Black licorice, iodine and pencil lead notes combine with rich huckleberry tones on the palate. Delicious and beaming with bright acidity, savor this beauty now and over the next fifteen plus years. Drink 2022-2038”

2017 Ladera Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

93 points – Owen Bargreen
“Inky and dark once in the glass, violets and black rose aromas meld with a great wall of dark fruits and exotic spices on this fantastic bouquet. Fat and full on the mouth, this shows ripe cassis flavors that mingle with graphite, creosote and black cherry cordial on the palate. Full-bodied and drinking marvelously now, the 2017 Ladera Cabernet Sauvignon should continue to show well for another decade or more. Drink 2021-2033.”

92 points – Wine Review Online
“The 2017 Ladera Cabernet Sauvignon is definitely worthy of aging for several years, if you enjoy more developed Cabs. But even now—with aeration and large glasses—drinking it can be a real pleasure.”

South Florida Reporter Website – “Selecting Wines for Holiday Gifts”
“It’s that time of the year when we head off to holiday parties, agonizing over what to wear or, worse, what wine to bring. Perhaps you will be gathering around a lavish family dinner when the host will put out her favorite bone china with carefully selected wines. Or, perhaps the get-together will be a more intimate gathering for which you have volunteered to bring a “nice” wine, meaning an ‘expensive’ wine.

Do you want a wine that will make a statement – a luxury wine that will leave an impression? Here are some recommendations that are sure to draw a few ‘wows:’

2017 Ladera Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon – Sourcing grapes from Howell Mountain estate vineyards, Ladera has a blockbuster wine. There is a lot of power and density with ripe blackberry and cassis flavors with hints of plums and spice. Supple tannins make it approachable in its youth but clearly it has a long road ahead of it.” – Tom Marquardt and Patrick Darr, November 2021

The Baltimore Sun – “Selecting Wines for the Holidays”
“Ladera Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2017 ($85). Sourcing grapes from Howell Mountain estate vineyards, Ladera has a blockbuster wine. There is a lot of power and density with ripe blackberry and cassis flavors with hints of plums and spice. Supple tannins make it approachable in its youth but clearly, it has a long road ahead of it.”

2009 Ladera Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

9-9.5 points – Vinography
Alder Yarrow, April 2003

2007 Ladera Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

93 points – Wine & Spirits
“From estate vines growing at 1,600 to 1,800 feet, this wine has a flintlock mineral blackness when first poured. Underneath, there are hints of spice, tobacco leaf and gentle black currant fruit that grow more prominent with air. A mountain wine with tension and restraint, this is built to age for ten years or more.” – Josh Greene, December 2011

93 points – Wine Advocate
“The most expensive offering is the 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain. A classic Howell Mountain wine, it is tannic and backward with blueberry, blackberry and floral notes intermixed with lots of minerality as well as a boatload of tannin. This is a long-term wine so forget it for 3-4 years and drink it over the following two decades.”

90 points – Wine Spectator
“Still very tight and backward, exhibiting loamy earth, currant and dark berry flavors that show touches of cedar and tobacco, with an elegant and satisfying finish. True-to-form Howell Mountain Cabernet in a warm year. Drink now through 2021. 2,200 cases made.” – JL

2006 Ladera Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

94 points – Wine Spectator
“A tour de force Cabernet. Dense, plush, rich and concentrated, with wall-to-wall flavors, offering layers of black cherry, black currant, black licorice, mineral and graphite. Full-bodied and tightly wound with firm tannins, yet finishes with a mix of juicy berry and mineral flavors. Drink now through 2020. 3,000 cases made.” – JL

94 points – Wine & Spirits
“In 2000, Pat and Anne Stotesbery bought the Chateau Woltner pro­perty and replanted it to cabernet sauvignon. The carefully tended young vines and gentle handling of a gravity flow winery make it pretty, while the altitude and soils of the site give it Howell Mountain heft and minerality. One of our tasters, who used to live in Angwin, responded immediately to the wine: ‘It tastes like the blackberries that grow in thickets on Howell Mountain,’ he said. It’s dramatic black juice with its fair share of alcohol, an earthy ’06 with the potential to charm. For the cellar.” – Josh Greene, December 2010

91 points – Wine Advocate
“The star of this duo is the 2006 Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain, which offers up juicy notes of crushed rocks, flowers, dark berries, black currants, and earth. This elegant, medium to full-bodied Cabernet possesses both finesse and substance. Deep, pure, and rich with moderate tannins, it will benefit from 2-3 years of cellaring, and should drink well over the following 15 years.”

90 points – JamesSuckling.com
“Lovely aromas of blackberries, minerals and dried flowers. Full bodied, with fine tannins and a berry and chocolate finish. This is balanced and very pretty, approachable now. Delicious. Why wait?” – James Suckling, April 2011

2005 Ladera Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

96 points – Andrea Robinson
“Monumental quality and complexity. Dark fudge, black raspberry, tar and bramble notes, with amazing concentration and velvety, mouth-coating tannins. The flavor density and structure suggest it will age beautifully. One of the best CA Cabs, period.” – 2010

90 points – Vinous
“Bright red-ruby. Aromas of blackberry pastille, mocha and spicecake. Ripe and supple but at the same time juicy and firm, with almost exotic ripe plum and chocolate liqueur flavors leavened by minerals and sweet oak notes. This creamy cabernet finishes with sweet tannins and very good breadth.” – Stephen Tanzer, May 2009

2004 Ladera Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

93 points – The Tasting Panel
“A small jewel on Howell Mountain that produces rich, classic, nicely articulated estate wines.” – Anthony Dias Blue, August 2007

93 points – Patterson’s Beverage Journal
“A small jewel on Howell Mountain that produces rich, classic, nicely articulated estate wines.”

92 points – Wine & Spirits
“Young vines, growing at 1,600 to 1,800 feet, have consistently produced a succulent mountain-grown cabernet since the first release. The ’04 has full-on mineral intensity, a giant mountain cabernet. The power of this wine increases over the course of several days, and the fruit is there to sustain it for many years to come.” – J.G.

91 points – Wine Spectator
“A rustic yet smooth and harmonious style, with dusty berry, mineral, sage and herb scents that form a complex core of flavors. There’s good intensity, and the tannins are in check. Ends with a minerally aftertaste, making this a wine that’s very true to its appellation. Best from 2008 through 2016. 2,500 cases made.” – JL

91 points – Vinous
“Deep ruby-red. Cassis, black cherry and menthol on the pure, slightly medicinal nose. Dense, sweet and pure, with lovely delineation and depth to the flavors of dark berries, bitter chocolate and mint. Chewy but pliant. Finishes with firm but ripe tannins and very good length. Classic Howell Mountain cabernet from a ripe year.” – Stephen Tanzer, May 2007

91 points – International Wine Cellar
“Deep ruby-red. Cassis, black cherry and menthol on the pure, slightly medicinal nose. Dense, sweet and pure, with lovely delineation and depth to the flavors of dark berries, bitter chocolate and mint. Chewy but pliant. Finishes with firm but ripe tannins and very good length. Classic Howell Mountain cabernet from a ripe year.”

Superior – JancisRobinson.com
“Lush black fruit, cassis, liquorice, tar and black olive on the powerful nose. A big, intense mountain wine with beefy tannins, crisp acidity and subtle oak. Beautifully balanced for its weight and built to last.” – Linda Murphy, June 2008

2003 Ladera Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

95 points – Wine & Spirits
“Karen Culler makes this wine on the old Chateau Woltner property, which Pat and Anne Stotesbery bought in 2000. From young vines grown at 1,600 to 1,800 feet, this starts from a small place, with succulent, compact flavors of cassis, cedar and herbs, classically styled. Tasted over the course of several days, it gains intensity as the fruit character expands; the tannins seem to propel the wine rather than smother it. The wine feels toned and muscular, while the fruit remains lively and youthfully fresh. Beautifully composed.” – Josh Greene, December 2006

90 points – Wine Enthusiast
“Really good Cab here, a blend of mountain and foothills fruit that captures Napa’s elegant intensity. It’s a fully dry, balanced wine, with hefty, sticky tannins yet an immediate approach-ability of blackberry and Chinese plum sauce flavors and a rich, chocolaty finish. Good now and over the next ten years.” – Steve Heimoff, December 2006

2002 Ladera Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

92 points – Wine Enthusiast
“Tasted alongside Ladera’s ’01 Lone Canyon Cab, this is better structured. The acid and tannin ballet is an exciting one, joined by rich smoky oak and a ripe Cabernet expression of black currants and cassis that’s delicious. This is a major-league wine that should develop through 2010.” – Steve Heimoff, December 2005

92 points – Wine & Spirits
“Young vines, growing at 1,600 to 1,800 feet, have consistently produced a succulent mountain-grown cabernet since the first release. The ’02 is sweetly ripe. The power of this wine increases over the course of several days, and the fruit is there to sustain it for many years to come.” – J.G.

90 points – Wine Spectator
“This seamless effort is elegant and understated, and at a good drinking stage. Smooth-textured, with touches of maturity in the core red berry and herb-laced flavors.—2002 California Cabernet blind retrospective (May 2012). Drink now through 2019. 710 cases made.” – JL

2001 Ladera Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

93 points – Wine Spectator
“Delivers a beam of pure, tight, ripe, intense dark berry fruit, well-structured, firming at midpalate and holding focus to end in a sleek, persistent finish. Very impressive.—2001 California Cabernet blind retrospective (June 2011). Drink now through 2017. 768 cases made.” – JL

92 points – Wine Enthusiast
“Everyone’s tannins are getting softer these days, but Howell Mountain Cabs are hanging in there. Massive, with intense blackcurrant and oak flavors that finish dry. You can tell this is a very fine wine from its balance. Best after 2008, but approachable now.” – Steve Heimoff, March 2005

2000 Ladera Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

90 points – Wine Spectator
“Dark and supple, with a rich mineral-, blackberry- and currant-infused core of fruit flavors, turning elegant and polished, with a sense of harmony and finesse. Lots of flavors push through on the aftertaste. Best from 2004 through 2011. 815 cases made.” – JL

Cabernet Sauvignon – Estate

2016 Ladera Estate Cabernet Sauvignon

96 points – The Tasting Panel, Meredith May
“Grapes from Howell Mountain and Calistoga make up this sturdy yet silky red with just a small percentage of Petit Verdot. For all its concentration and power, the mountain fruit enables the wine to maintain its complexity without overwhelming the palate. Cedar and chocolate braid through high-toned blue fruit. Fennel, black tea, soy sauce, and black pepper merge on a highway to heaven.”

93 points – Wine Review Online
“Ladera is getting quite a string of winners under its umbrella [and is] a producer that continues to impress.”
– Rich Cook, November 2020

2015 Ladera Estate Cabernet Sauvignon

90 points – Vinography
“Dark garnet in the glass, this wine smells of black cherry and cassis. In the mouth, rich black cherry and cassis are draped in a fleecy blanket of tannins. Notesof cola mix with cherry in the finish.”

“Wines & Wineries to Watch” – 5 Stars – Restaurant Wine
“Exceptional quality for its type and style; a superstar within its price category. Merits an extra special effort to purchase. Very highly recommended. Wonderful mountain vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon. It is concentrated, full bodied, and young; a wine with rich black currant, blackberry, black cherry, cedar, red licorice, and oak flavors, good balance, and a very persistent finish. Warrants at least 5 more years of aging. Great value. 5 to 7 day cold soak. Aged 22 months in French oak barrels, 90% new. 2,649 cases. 14.6% [2024-2032].”
Ronn Wiegand, January 2021

2014 Ladera Estate Cabernet Sauvignon

93 points – Andy Blue

91 points – Wine Enthusiast
“Made from fruit grown both on Howell and Diamond mountains, this wine is powerful and concentrated, bursting in mountain tannins. Waxy plum, dried herb, graphite and pencil shavings provide a savory tangy underbelly of woody accents, met and complemented by robust black cherry and cassis, the palate rounded at the finish.” – VB

Pinot Noir – Pillow Road

2020 Ladera Pillow Road Pinot Noir

95 points – The Tasting Panel, Somm Journal, Meredith May
“In the Sebastopol Hills district of the Russian River Valley, this vineyard that features Goldridge sandy loam soils is a mere 10 miles from the Pacific Ocean. The wine is a single-clone expression (the Swan clone) and aged in 55% new French oak for 15 months. A bath of cocoa-covered cherries, with a dollop of hibiscus, sweet ginger, and cranberry demonstrates its brightness. Red apple, sparked with cinnamon augments the keen acidity and balanced tannins through to the finish.”

2019 Ladera Pillow Road Pinot Noir

95 points – The Tasting Panel, Meredith May
“From the Sebastopol Hills region of the Russian River Valley, the Goldridge-laden soils of this vineyard lies just 10 miles from the Pacific Ocean. Scents of tilled earth and rose petals dazzle. Patchouli and cinnamon-lathered raspberries are eloquent in their elegant expression, communicating exotic cocoa-dipped floral tones. Spiced dates, paprika, coriander, and a hint of cumin extend the finish 95.”

93 points – Owen Bargreen
“The 2019 Ladera ‘Pillow Road Vineyard’ Pinot Noir shows off ripe red currants, cola and sassafras notes with Bing cherry and freshly tilled soils on the nose. The palate is soft and inviting with a smooth texture and great sense of weight and length. Everything is nicely in balance here, as this outstanding Pinot Noir is best consumed over the next ten years. Drink 2022-2032”

Double Gold – 2020 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition

“Bright, Savory, Cola, Silky” – The Gazette

2018 Ladera Pillow Road Pinot Noir

92 points – Wine Review Online
“If you want to know what wine writers mean when they use ‘cherry cola’ as a descriptor, this is the perfect demonstration bottling. The nose shouts the characteristic in clarion voice, and the palate follows suit with a plush texture carrying the flavors and winding up with a bright acidic pop that extends the finish. It’s a certain to please option in the sea of Russian River Valley Pinot Noir.” – Rich Cook, December 2021

91 points – Owen Bargreen
“Sourced from this Russian River Valley vineyard first planted in 2008, this Pinot Noir utilizes a host of clonal selections, showing ripe black raspberry and tilled soils with wild mushroom on the nose. The palate is soft and nicely textured, delivering plenty of tart red fruits with damp earth and tobacco tones. Drink 2021-2028.”

90 points – Wine Enthusiast

2017 Ladera Pillow Road Pinot Noir

93 points – Creators.com
“In this vintage, the Pillow Road vineyard has delivered a meaty pinot noir that expresses exceptional depth and palate weight, layers of black cherry and raspberry fruit, a gentle touch of wood spice, and firm but nicely integrated tannins. Cellar another four to six years, or drink now.” – Robert Whitley, September 2020

93 points – Wine Review Online
“Ladera’s go-to site for the Burgundian side of its portfolio brings us another fine Chardonnay, this one focused on lemon créme and soft tropical notes that get a boost from moderate oak toast. The flavors ride a bright line of acidity through a rich finish that shows push and integration. A late release for the variety in the region, it shows it was worth the wait. This has baked halibut written all over it, so a trip to the fish monger is in order when pairing.” – Rich Cook

2016 Ladera Pillow Road Pinot Noir

90 points – Wine Enthusiast
“Thick and concentrated in cola spice, this full-bodied wine is lengthy and dense, with a complex layer of black cherry and plum. Sage and forest-floor tones complement the fruit. Excellent; highly recommend”

90 points – Wine & Spirits
“Delicious, compelling; a compelling wine of its region; a delicious, finessed expression of place. Focused on full- bore cherry fruit, this fleshy pinot has a light touch for all that juicy richness. It’s gentle and cherry-simple, a wine to pour with rare roast beef.” – Josh Greene

90 points – James Suckling
“This has a ripe and rich array of cherries and plums with plenty of earthy and spicy-oak complexity. The palate has a supple and juicy feel with a wealth of ultra fleshy fruit and toasty oak on offer. Drink now. Outstanding.”

2015 Ladera Pillow Road Pinot Noir

94 points – Wine Enthusiast
“This is a finely made wine, with tones of herbs, smoked black cherry and blackberry. Thick, velvety smooth and concentrated, it finds its balance in high-toned, underlying acidity and sparks of cardamom and black tea.” – VB

91 points – Mary Ewing-Mulligan
“Ladera’s Pillow Road Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015 is a gentle and earthy expression rather than exuberance of fruit. Its aroma suggests plum, tart red berries and black cherry with notes of smoke, dry earth and fresh herbs. In your mouth this wine is nearly full-bodied but not dense, showing supple texture and a measured amount of dusty tannins that are well-integrated with the fruit. Flavors suggest red fruits, cinnamon baking spice, bakers’ cocoa and dry forest-floor notes. These flavors are relatively subdued, so that the wine’s structure and its smooth, agreeable texture capture your attention. In terms of winemaking, the whole berries underwent a seven-day cold soak before fermentation, and the wine subsequently aged for 15 months in French oak barrels that were 65 percent new. It is a credit to the fruit that the new oak does not dominate the wine.”

Rosé – Pillow Road

2020 Ladera Pillow Road Rosé

92 points – VinePair
““One of the best 25 Rosés of 2021.
Keith Beavers

Chardonnay – Pillow Road

2020 Ladera Pillow Road Vineyard Chardonnay

92 points | Grade: A – IntoWine.com
“Ladera launched in 1998 and has consistently produced impressive wines. For their 2020 Chardonnay, they aged the grapes sur lie in new French oak barrels for 15 months (58% of which were new), which means this definitely offers a creamier style, however it is well balanced so you get a classic Chardonnay, but a silky smooth one. This offers light pear, lemon chiffon, lime meringue, candied almond, slight resin, and hints of guava. This is a lovely, tactile wine that drinks beautifully with, or without food. 289 cases. ORIGIN: Russian River Valley.” – Michael Cervin, November 2022

2019 Ladera Pillow Road Vineyard Chardonnay

93 points – Owen Bargreen
“The Pillow Road Vineyard is located in the Sebastapol Hills region of the Russian River Valley. On the nose this takes on baking spice dusted and buttered brioche tones with wild mushroom and shades of freshly tilled soils. Very soft and refined on the mouth, this is loaded with mouth-watering acidity with lemon rind, vanilla cream and shades of roasted pineapple. Consume this delicious new 2019 Chardonnay over the next seven plus years. Drink 2022-2029.”

Gold – 2020 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition

2018 Ladera Pillow Road Vineyard Chardonnay

95 points – The Tasting Panel
“Sur lie aging in French oak for 15 months denotes this wine’s lush texture and vineyard’s 10-mile proximity to the pacific makes for its alert, eloquent personality. A veil of chamomile and custard surrounds a creamy core. Daffodil and lemon blossom merge for acute focus thanks to a high-toned acidity.” – Meredith May

92 points – Owen Bargreen
“Every bit outstanding, the 2018 Ladera ‘Pillow Road Vineyard’ Chardonnay was aged for fifteen months in 64% new French oak before bottling. This Russian River Valley Chardonnay shows a buttery texture and ripe orchard fruits with lemon zest and roasted hazelnut tones on the palate. Medium to full-bodied with great length, this outstanding Chardonnay will provide drinking enjoyment for another seven to ten years. Drink 2021-2028.”

“The Best Russian River Valley Chardonnay We’ve Tasted This Year” – Capital Gazette
Ladera Pillow Road Vineyard Chardonnay 2018 ($55). Yes, it’s a bit pricey, but it’s probably the best Russian River Valley chardonnay we have tasted this year. The texture is exquisite with lush tropical fruit and peach flavors, toasted oak and citrus, hazelnut aromas. The finish went on and on.” – Tom Marquardt and Patrick Darr, June 2021

“Complex Aromas… Nice Minerality” – The San Francisco Examiner
– Lyle W. Norton, March 2021

2017 Ladera Pillow Road Vineyard Chardonnay

93 points – Wine Review Online
“Ladera’s go-to site for the Burgundian side of its portfolio brings us another fine Chardonnay, this one focused on lemon créme and soft tropical notes that get a boost from moderate oak toast. The flavors ride a bright line of acidity through a rich finish that shows push and integration. A late release for the variety in the region, it shows it was worth the wait. This has baked halibut written all over it, so a trip to the fish monger is in order when pairing.”

92 points – Wine Spectator
“Big and rich, with creamy accents to the apple pastry and brioche flavors. Lithe and toasty midpalate, featuring a finish that lingers with almond tart and white chocolate hints. Drink now through 2024.”

2015 Ladera Pillow Road Vineyard Chardonnay

96 points – Vinography
“Pale gold in color, this wine smells of buttered popcorn and cold cream. In the mouth, lemon curd, pineapple, and a touch of salty buttered popcorn are positively electric yellow with brilliant acidity. The wood is beautifully integrated here and the fruit shines through. An excellent wine.” – Alder Yarrow

94 points – The Tasting Panel
“From the Sebastopol Hills just ten miles from the Pacific, this striking white grown on Goldridge sandy loam soils exudes arresting aromas of vetiver, lemon curd, and summer pears. Chamomile, baked apple, and tarragon are enmeshed in the wine’s creamy nature, and keenly-linear citrus notes bring in high-toned acidity. The finish is surprisingly salty.”

93 points – Pinotfile
“Moderately light golden yellow color in the glass. Love able aromas of lemon curd, honeycomb, butterscotch and toasty brioche. Discretely rich in the mouth featuring an array of flavors including lemon, lime, green apple, pineapple and a dash of complimentary oak. Slightly viscous and highly satisfying in a fruit-laden style that has enough acid backbone to be refreshing. Full of California sunshine and well done in this style.”

93 points – Rich Cook
“I’m hopeful that my continued praise of partial malolactic fermentation is getting more producers interested in the technique as it allows our state’s fruit to shine with more moderate intervention in the winery. This wine is yet another example of why “PMF” is so successful — there is a ton of fruit expressed here, with pear, citrus, apple and peach joined by soft notes of vanilla and spice, all finishing together in crisp, mouthwatering fashion. A blend of Old Wente and Mt. Eden 809 clones. Delicious!”

92 points – Mary Ewing-Mulligan
“Ladera’s Pillow Road Vineyard Chardonnay 2015 is a flavorful, exuberant wine in which fruit expression trumps structure. Nothing lacking in the wine’s structure: full body, uplifting acidity, a slight phenolic grip from oak, and seductively creamy texture. But what’s within this structure is what entices. The wine’s aromas and flavors suggest ripe red apple, ripe pear, ripe lemon, and a bit of peach, with brioche, vanilla and white-chocolate notes. This wine exudes juiciness and flavor, and if that is what you like, you might find it irresistible. The winemaking for this Chardonnay involved whole cluster pressing, barrel fermentation, partial malo-lactic fermentation, and aging on the lees for 15 months in French oak barrels, 60 percent of which were new.”

90 points – Wine Enthusiast
“From a site in the Sebastopol Hills, this wine offers up-front acidity and freshness, with a floral flourish of rose garden and lavender. On the palate it becomes velvety and exotic in nutmeg and cardamom, the fruit, oak and acidity integrated well.”

Sauvignon Blanc – Oak Knoll

2022 Ladera Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc

95 points – The Tasting Panel
“From Ryan’s Vineyard, with its sunny days and cool nights, this blend of 52% Sauvignon Blanc and 48% Sauvignon Musqué is a sleek Artic fox. Spending 24 hours in tank and then transferred to French oak and stainless steel, the wine was aged sur-lies for six months. Succulent and juicy, like a bite into a fresh summer peach, it’s a hedonistic start. Creamy and extroverted, with a hint of dill and a burst of lime zest. Gardenia and pineapple surface mid-palate, generating a refreshing finish”. – Meredith May

92 points – Owen Bargreen
“The 2022 Ladera Sauvignon Blanc has a large portion of Sauvignon Mosque (48%) blended in. Sourced from the Oak Knoll District, this offers good depth and concentration with nutty and salty undertones alongside ripe peach and pink lady apple flavors with sourdough bread undertones. Enjoy this beauty now and over the next five to seven years. Drink 2023-2030”.

91 points – The Wine Advocate
“Sourced from Ryan’s Vineyard in Oak Knoll, Madera’s 2022 Sauvignon Blanc features a flat-out gorgeous blend of grassiness, melon, fig and subtle hints of oak on the nose (13% new French oak, remainder was in older wood or stainless steel). It’s medium to full-bodied, plump, rounded and even a touch tropical (guava) in the mouth, with an opulent, extended finish.” – Joe Czerwinski

2021 Ladera Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc

95 points – The Tasting Panel
“Fruit from Ryan’s Vineyard in the Oak Knoll District provides the fruit for this stunner, with Clone 1 and Sauvignon Musqué. Peaches and cream aromas dive into a salty minerality, fueled by scents and flavors of jasmine, ginger, and gardenia. With a tropical twist mid-palate of ripe passionfruit and kiwi, a spice lurks in the background for an ultimate creamy-clean experience.”

91 points – Owen Bargreen
“Very nicely textured, the 2021 Ladera Sauvignon Blanc comes from the Ryan’s Vineyard in the Oak Knoll AVA. Immediately gratifying, this delivers sweetened gooseberry, nectarine rind and copious minerals on the palate with flinty undertones. Enjoy over the next five plus years. Drink 2022-2027”

4 Stars – The Press Democrat
“A zesty sauvignon blanc with up-front notes of grapefruit, lime and kumquat. Balanced, with crisp acid. Refreshing.” – Peg Melnik

A Spring into Summer TreatAspen Times
“From the outstanding 2021 vintage, the Ladera Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc marries time, talent, and the best of Napa Valley in a brilliant bottling.”
Read Full Article Here – Kelly J. Hayes, May 2023

2020 Ladera Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc

94 points – The Tasting Panel
“This small-production blend of 58% Sauvignon Blanc and 42% Sauvignon Musqué is sourced from Ryan’s Vineyards in the Oak Knoll District AVA. The mouthfeel is in another dimension, while the fruit has a mysterious quality, both ripe and opulent. Penetrating notes of jasmine rice, tangelo, pea tendrils, and lemon sorbet form its juicy core. A luxurious sheath of creaminess sparks with fine acidity and herbal tones.” – Meredith May

“Our tasting panel’s favorite late summer wines” – 93 points – Houston Chronicle
“Our tasters, gave it a unanimous recommendation, with a high score of 9.3. ‘Orange and lime zest. Tomato leaf herbal notes.” – Dale Robertson, September 2021

90 points – Owen Bargreen
“Gooseberry, wet slate and green apple tones all fill the nose. The palate is soft, slightly sweet and beautifully textured, unveiling ripe melon, Pink Lady apple and sweetened kumquat flavors with mineral undertones. Drink 2021-2025.”

90 points – Wine Enthusiast Advance Buying Guide
“With a healthy 42% addition of Sauvignon Musque, this is a floral and dry white, medium bodied in style with integrated layers of stone fruit, Meyer lemon, mango and anise. Aromas of honeysuckle permeate throughout.” – Virginie Boone, December 2021

Tom Simoneau | The Wine Guy
“They say that great wine is made in the vineyard and this Sauvignon Blanc is a shining example. Organically grown on Ryan’s Vineyard in the Oak Knoll District AVA, the wine is 58% Sauvignon Blanc and 42% Sauvignon Musque. And yes, winemaker Jade Barrett did his thing in the winery but, with one sniff and a taste, you can tell these grapes are special.”

South Florida Reporter
“More complex than your average sauvignon blanc, this version is the cool, windswept Ryan’s Vineyard in the Oak Knoll District. The blending of sauvignon musque and some oak barrel aging gives the wine plumpness and depth. Tropical fruit and stone-fruit flavors.” – Patrick Darr and Tom Marquardt

4 Stars – The Press Democrat
“This is a layered sauvignon blanc with notes of mango, Meyer lemon, anise and honeysuckle. Its charm is that it’s weighted to stone fruit and has great balance. Lovely.” – Peg Melnik, January 2022

2019 Ladera Sauvignon Blanc

92 points – Wine Enthusiast Advance Buying Guide
“From a site in Oak Knoll planted to both Sauvignon Blanc and Sauvignon Musque grapes, the latter of which is represented here at 25%, this is a high-toned white, with grip and texture. Legume, quince and lime meet floral aromas of jasmine that accent the fruit and delicate oak well.”

2018 Ladera Sauvignon Blanc

95 points – Robert Whitley
“Though a bit pricey for Sauvignon Blanc, the Ladera earns that kind of price respect with a sophisticated and complex palate that is uncommon for the variety. Inviting notes of tangerine and tropical fruits tell the story of Ryan’s Vineyard, located in the Oak Knoll District at the cooler end of the Napa Valley. The combination of warm days and cool nights in Oak Knoll have produced a Sauvignon Blanc that is rich and fresh at the same time. In the cellar the winemaker utilized both stainless steel and oak during fermentation, creating a combination of floral aromatics mixed with hints of spice.”

94 points – Rich Cook
“This is a delicious Sauvignon Blanc from Napa Valley, one knocking on the door of the top area producers. Fully 35% Musque clone in the mix pops up the brightness, featuring mixed citrus, bright wet stone and some pleasant oak influence that spices things up. Well done!”

90 points – James Suckling
“A fresh and citrusy white with spices and herbs on the nose. Slightly pungent and herbaceous on the palate. Crisp. A blend of 65% sauvignon blanc and 35% sauvignon musque. Drink now”

2016 Ladera Sauvignon Blanc

94 points – Linda Murphy
“Howell Mountain and Oak Knoll District grapes, three different clones, and fermentation in a combination of stainless steel and French oak, created this multi-layered wine – one of the most complex and delicious Sauvignon Blancs I’ve tasted from Napa Valley from the 2016 vintage. Layers unfold with each sniff and taste: white flowers, tropical fruit, citrus, sage, green apple and a toasty note on the finish.”

92 points – Andy Blue
“Silky grapefruit and lively acidity; racy, nervy and fresh with tangy, lifted style; juicy and long with balance and finesse.”

91 points – Rich Cook
“A new producer to me, though they have been in the game since 1998. A citrus focused Sauvignon Blanc, with yellow grapefruit and lime joined by light tropical notes and a touch of grass held together by a stony mineral core that finishes long and crisp with all elements present. A fine introduction to a winery that I’ll be looking to get to know better.”

90 points – James Suckling
“This has a ripe and rich array of cherries and plums with plenty of earthy and spicy-oak complexity. The palate has a supple and juicy feel with a wealth of ultra fleshy fruit and toasty oak on offer. Drink now.”

2015 Ladera Sauvignon Blanc

92 points – Wine Spectator
“Vibrant and juicy, with an intriguing mix of honeysuckle, mango and toast flavors that are intense and refreshing. Floral and pine notes linger on the finish. Drink now. 1,100 cases made.”

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