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Hundred Acre, Dark Ark Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley, California, 2018

Regular price $794.95 Sale price $850.00
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Overview of the Wine
A relatively new (cult) domaine, only established in 2000 by the flamboyant winemaker Jayson Woodbridge from Canada in St. Helena (Napa Valley -  California). A specialist “pur sang” who produces high quality wines from principally Cabernet Sauvignon.

The name “Hundred Acre” has been derived from “Hundred Acre Wood”, where Winnie the Pooh and his friends were living. Jayson Woodbridge, who used to be an investment banker, first bought the “Kayli Morgan” vineyard (3,6 Ha) in Howell Mountain already in the 1990’s. This 100% Cabernet Sauvignon saw his debut in 2000.

Further acquisitions were the “Ark Vineyard” (6 Ha) and a very small, but well-situated hillside parcel of only 2 Ha, just above the historic “Eisele Vineyard” near Calistoga. His approach in winemaking has been very serious. The vineyards are in excellent condition. Only 1 grape cluster per vine is allowed, so the pruning is very extensive, and the yields are extremely low. During harvest time, at least 5 passes are made through the vineyards and all grapes are hand sorted and selected. He uses new French oak barrels to age his wines for a period of at least 24 months (some of special cuvées age even 36 -42 months!).

Since 2004, a new project has been started in Barossa Valley (Australia), to produce some extraordinary wines from the Shiraz grape. Unfortunately, it isn’t easy to lay your hands onto some bottles unless you are on the mailing list. Furthermore, some of his wines received the perfect score in certain vintages, so his collection of wines is in high demand.

"One of California’s (perhaps the world’s) most flamboyant, talented, contrarian wine producers is Napa Valley’s Jayson Woodbridge, the owner of Hundred Acre winery. Woodbridge has been running in high gear since his debut 2000. His 100% Cabernet Sauvignons are made primarily by him, with some consulting advice from Philippe Melka. His first effort was from his home vineyard, Kayli Morgan, which is situated east of St. Helena. That offering was followed by a Cabernet from the 15 acre Ark Vineyard on Howell Mountain. Woodbridge recently purchased a tiny, well-situated hillside parcel above the Eisele Vineyard, southeast of Calistoga. His special projects include the Cabernet Sauvignon Precious (in issue #174 I mistakenly called it “Previous”), a wine harvested grape by grape rather than bunch by bunch, and his Cabernet Sauvignon Deep Time, which sees extended oak aging (36-42 months). All things considered, this is an extraordinary group of wines. They are not easy to secure unless you are on Hundred Acre’s mailing list, but they are truly profound offerings that showcase a variety of Napa Valley terroirs as well as different harvesting and barrel aging techniques. The newest enterprise is the Dark Matter Zinfandel, a Zinfandel that is pushed to the limits of ripeness from the high elevations of Howell Mountain. The most common characteristic among all of the Hundred Acre Cabernet Sauvignons is their incredibly opulent, creamy textures. That character vindicates Woodbridge’s harvesting decisions as he seems to achieve extraordinarily sweet, noble tannins in all of his wines. There are approximately 250 cases of Jayson Woodbridge’s special projects, including the Precious and Deep Time cuvees." - Robert Parker

Grape / Blend
Cabernet Sauvignon

Howell Mountain, Napa Valley, California

Winemaker Tasting Notes
Indulge in a symphony of opulence with the 2018 Hundred Acre Dark Ark Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. This wine entrances the senses with its deep, inky hue, foreshadowing the rich depth that awaits. The nose is an intricate tapestry of dark allure – layers of blackberries and cassis interweave with nuances of mocha, tobacco, and a whisper of vanilla spice. As the elixir graces your palate, an exquisite fusion of flavors unfolds – ripe plums and black cherries meld seamlessly with decadent dark chocolate, all underscored by a subtle hint of aromatic oak. Velvety tannins caress the tongue, lending a luxurious texture to the wine's bold personality. This Cabernet Sauvignon is a masterclass in balance, where its lavish richness is elegantly tempered by a refined acidity. The finish is nothing short of breathtaking – a lingering crescendo of dark fruit and sophisticated earthiness, leaving an indelible mark on your senses. The 2018 Hundred Acre Dark Ark is a testament to the artistry of winemaking, a true expression of Napa Valley's extraordinary terroir. Whether savored on its own or paired with a sumptuous meal, this wine promises a journey into the heart of luxurious decadence, inviting you to relish in a sensory experience that lingers long after the final sip.

99 Points - Jeb Dunnuck
The 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Dark Ark is unquestionably cut from the same cloth as the base Ark Vineyard, although, as the name suggests, it is slightly darker and more mineral-laced. Dense purple-hued, with powerful notes of blue fruits, smoked tobacco, violets, and damp earth, it has perfectly integrated background oak, ripe, building, flawless tannins, and a great, great finish, and I love its purity of fruit. This is going to benefit from 3-4 years of bottle age and keep through 2045.

99 Points - Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Deep garnet-purple colored, the 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Dark Ark offers up gregarious notes of stewed plums, Christmas pudding, Chinese five spice and scorched earth, followed by suggestions of molten rocks, smoked meats, tilled soil and truffles. Full-bodied, the palate reveals tightly packed layers of black fruit preserves and earthy nuances, supported by ripe, fine-grained tannins and a lively backbone, finishing long and enticingly restrained.

Product size: 750ml

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