This week I had the chance to meet with Craig Camp of Cornerstone Cellars to catch-up, taste some older vintages, and discover what is new at Cornerstone. BevX readers know that I am incredibly fond of the terrific wines being made at Cornerstone.
The big news from Cornerstone is the introduction of a single-vineyard series of wines. The vineyards that will be featured are:
- Kairos Vineyard on the edge of Oak Knoll and Coombsville
- Grigsby Vineyard in the Yountville AVA
- Oakville Station Vineyard in To Kalon
- Red Lake Vineyard on Howell Mountain
According to Camp it took some time to get to the point of being confident to offer single vineyard wines. “Only time can show you what a vineyard can deliver then you can decide if it merits the status of a single vineyard bottling. I’ve always felt the vineyard should convince me instead of me convincing the vineyard.”
The majority of the wines will be crafted from Bordeaux varietals with the exception being a Syrah from the Grigsby Vineyard.
“I get why Cabernet and Merlot suffer from this prejudice. The world is covered with hundreds of thousands of acres of these varieties simply because they are famous and have shown easy adaptability to many climates and soils. Unlike varieties like Pinot Noir, Nebbiolo and Viognier they have proved able to produce vast oceans of industrial wines under their names as they are more forgiving in the vineyard and capable of producing massive crops of grapes.” explains Camp.
The first release of these new single vineyard wines will be available this September with the release of the 2012 Cornerstone Cellars Merlot, Oakville Station.
As for the older vintages sampled from Cornerstone Cellars
2010 Cornerstone Cellars Sauvignon Blanc (released two years ago) – The extra time in bottle softened some of the edges from the citrus notes and married them with the dry, tropical fruit and herbal notes. It’s a very sophisticated wine that is nothing like Bordeaux nor New Zealand – it’s pure Cornerstone.
1997 Cornerstone Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon – This is a beautifully mature Cabernet proving without a doubt that these wines age gracefully. It showed deep garnet red colors with small signs of aging on the edges. The nose and palate delivered sweet cedar notes with mature red fruits and complex herb and spice notes. This wine would seamlessly fit into a blind tasting of mature Bordeaux (Medoc) reds.