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The Top 10 Napa Wines of the Year!
December 4, 2019

The Top 10 Napa Wines of the Year!


10. 2017 Chappellet Mountain Cuvee Red Napa Valley

Wally's price: $36

I’ll let you in on a secret. This entry-level Bordeaux style blend from Chappellet is perennially one of the best bang for the buck reds out of Napa Valley providing ripeness, balance and authenticity at an unheard of price for a pedigreed Napa producer. This recently released 2017 will go toe to toe with any under $40 red from anywhere in the world. -Geoff Pattison, Wally’s Napa Buyer

9. 2016 Di Costanzo Cabernet Sauvignon Farella Vineyard

Wally's price: $120

95+ Points - Vinous

The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Farella Vineyard is just as magnificent from bottle as it was from barrel. Vertical and towering in feel, the 2016 has so much to offer. In this tasting, the 2016 reminds me of the 2013, but with more fruit slightly friendlier tannins, both of which make it a real pleasure to taste, even in the early going. All of the savory and mineral character that makes Farella such a distinctive site runs through this vivid, super-expressive Cabernet. Don't miss it. 95+ points. -Antonio Galloni, Vinous

8. 2015 Dana Estates Onda

Wally's price: $215

Over the past decade, Dana Estates has firmly established itself among the greatest cult names in Napa Valley alongside such heavyweights as Harlan, Colgin and Screaming Eagle. While their trio of single vineyards (Lotus, Helms, and Hershey) routinely fetch over $600 per bottle, their brilliant Onda bottling is extremely close in quality to it’s big brothers, but much more accessible in price. Blended from all of Dana’s estate properties including the Crystal Springs Vineyard just below Howell Mountain, this is a painstakingly farmed wine that offers incredible value given the quality on offer. You can put this up against $500+ Cult Cabs and it will more than hold it’s own. -Geoff Pattison, Wally’s Napa Buyer

7. 2016 Quintessa

Wally's price: $190

97+ Points - Wine Advocate

The 2016 Proprietary Red Wine is blended of 89% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc, 1% Petit Verdot and 1% Carménère, with all fruit coming from the Quintessa estate, and it aged for 20 months in 73% new French oak. Very deep purple-black in color, it comes bounding out of the glass like a pedigree pup with exuberant notions of crème de cassis, warm blueberries and black cherries with hints of redcurrants, kirsch, candied violets, crushed rocks, cigar box and fallen leaves plus a waft of truffles. Full, rich and beautifully laced with layers of floral notes and fragrant earth, the profound black and blue fruits build slowly in the mouth, achieving great energy and depth with a beautiful velvety frame, finishing long and perfumed. 97+ points. -Lisa Perrotti-Brown, Wine Advocate

6. 2015 Mayacamas Cabernet Sauvignon

Wally's price: $139

97 Points - Vinous, #2 Wine Spectator Top 100 Wines of The Year

Another stellar wine from Mayacamas, the 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon continues to be quite reticent, which is probably a very good thing for its long-term prospects. Even so, the 2015 is dense, powerful and super-concentrated, with a level of finesse in its tannins that separates it from so many wines in this challenging vintage. Time in the glass brings out graphite, menthol, licorice, sage and spice notes that add a sense of gravitas. I would prefer to cellar the 2015 for at least a few years to allow some of the baby fat to melt away. I expect the 2015 will always remain an exotic, full-throttle wine relative to the norm here. I can't wait to see how it ages. 97 points. -Antonio Galloni, Vinous

5. 2016 Opus One

Wally's price: $385

98 Points - Wine Advocate

Deep garnet-purple colored, the 2016 Opus One offers up bold, expressive black and blue fruits: warm black plums, black cherries, blackcurrants and wild blueberries with a beautiful undercurrent of lilacs, roses, fertile loam, underbrush and Indian spices. Medium to full-bodied, the palate is a tightly coiled spring ready to explode, with fantastic tension and wonderfully ripe, very fine-grained tannins, finishing very long with a mineral lift. 98 points. -Lisa Perrotti-Brown, Wine Advocate

4. 2016 Dominus Estate

Wally's price: $339

100 Points - Wine Advocate

A blend of 84% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Petit Verdot and 8% Cabernet Franc aged in 40% new oak, the 2016 Proprietary Red Wine is deep purple-black in color and quite reticent at this youthful stage to begin, offering up subtle notions of potpourri, Indian spices, cigar box and iron ore over a core of crushed blackberries and black cherries with intermittent wafts of black and red currants, new leather and smoked meats. The palate is medium to full-bodied with a densely packed mid-palate and oodles of freshness framed by very ripe, finely grained tannins and laced with compelling earthy accents. It offers incredible vibrancy with tons of black and red fruit sparkle in the mid-palate leading to a provocative mineral element on the very long finish. If I could give more than 100 for this one, I would. To be released in May 2019. 100 points. -Lisa Perrotti-Brown, Wine Advocate

3. 2016 Sinegal Cabernet Sauvignon Estate

Wally's price: $100

95+ Points - Wine Advocate

The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon is made up of 85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Petit Verdot, 5% Merlot and 3% Malbec. It has a deep garnet-purple color and intense redcurrants, black raspberries, cassis, warm plums and kirsch with hints of violets, tobacco, forest floor and wild sage. The palate is full, firm, grainy and concentrated, finishing long and perfumed. 95+ points. -Lisa Perrotti-Brown, Wine Advocate

2. 2016 Marciano Estate Cabernet Sauvignon

Wally's price: $250

98+ Points - Jeb Dunnuck

Bottled in September of this year, the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate checks in as 82% Cabernet Sauvignon and 18% Cabernet Franc brought up in French oak. Its inky purple color is followed by classic notes of blackcurrants, lead pencil shavings, spring flowers, and hints of crushed rock. Deep, seamless, ultra-pure, and incredibly classic on the palate, it's another brilliant, classic Napa Cabernet Sauvignon from winemaker Morgan Maureze. It’s slightly more reserved than the 2015 (which is to be expected as the vintages are dramatically different) and is going to benefit from 3-5 years of bottle age. 98+ points. -Jeb Dunnuck

1. 2016 Spottswoode Cabernet Sauvignon

Wally's price: $225

100 Points - Wine Advocate

Deep garnet-purple in color, the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon is still very tight and youthful, slowly unfurling to reveal a multifaceted wine with tons of black, blue and red fruit sparks—plums, cherries, black currants and red currants—with dark chocolate, cedar chest, black tea and red roses in the background plus wafts of pencil lead and prosciutto. Medium-bodied and firmly textured by superbly ripe, grainy tannins, it has a fantastic core of intense, complex layers, finishing on an edifying mineral note. Wow! -Lisa Perrotti-Brown, Wine Advocate

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