ABC Style of Winemaking

Thomas Brown is renowned for his ABC style of winemaking.  He believes that you must first find the special piece of ground that can provide you with the quality of fruit that will enable the winemaker to craft a great product.  The next step is to guaranty that the farming methods used are creative, intelligent, updated and sustainable for the vineyard and its neighbors.  Lastly, he employs a minimalist approach to handling the juice even when he is applying his fine artistic touch.  This allows the DNA of the terroir to express itself.  His unique philosophy embodies old world indulgence of the dirt with a blend of new world efficiency and execution when crafting the wine.  He seems to have achieved the same perfect balance in his performance as exists in the wines that he creates.


2011 Casa Piena Cabernet Sauvignon

Estate, Yountville, Napa Valley

This wine is the result of the synthesis of our winemaking goals and the detailed care and attention paid to all aspects of the farming program.  We work intimately with the Barbour Vineyard’s team to come up with a precise farming regimen to accommodate each variable and maximize the potential of the site with the ultimate goal being vine uniformity.  This is achieved through utilizing different cover crops in different blocks as well as cultural practices such as leaf-thinning for canopy management and fruit thinning to ward off bunch rot and establish  phenological maturity.  The most influential variable for 2011 was of course the climate.  When you’re working with a challenging year, creative and effective farming practices are paramount to overall success.  We couldn’t be happier with the end result of this wine in the glass.  It embodies all the character of the site and delivers a rich, complex and complete Cabernet that once again balances all the fruit and savory notes the estate has become famous for.

Acquire Tasting Notes

2010 Casa Piena Cabernet Sauvignon

Estate, Yountville, Napa Valley

Most people only have one breakout vintage, we’ve been lucky enough to have two.  The 2010 represents a giant leap forward qualitatively for Casa Piena.  Dialing in the perfect yield for the season while reacting early to the cool summer conditions allowed us to achieve true ripeness in a challenging year.  The vintage valley wide is framed by acidity and that only adds to the traditional elegance of the Casa Piena site.  The best wines from the property feature balance in several areas:  fruit vs. tannin vs. acidity, savory vs. fruity elements, palate depth vs. breadth and palate weight/power vs. some of the more ethereal elements that contribute complexity to great wines.  Every year what dictates this achievement changes.  The Casa Piena wines have always been driven by the site and this might be the purest expression yet.

Not Available Tasting Notes

2009 Casa Piena Cabernet Sauvignon

Estate, Yountville, Napa Valley

Never have we seen the importance of the quality of a vineyard’s dirt come into play more than in 2009. We got off to a great start with a dry, warm spring and very little frost to speak of. A larger than average crop insured proper hang time in a warmer than average year. The six inches of rain that fell around October 12th we weren’t prepared for. Here’s where the property bailed us out. We missed maybe a week’s ripening progress as the site dried out seeing no mold or mildew growth on the fruit or any increase in berry size. As sunnier conditions returned we hung everything out for a couple more weeks bringing in the entire estate from October 24th-28th.

The 2009 continues the elevated quality level we saw with the 2008. It’s once more an elegant styled wine being more medium bodied and full of red and black fruits. The nose features rose petals, licorice, sweet tobacco, melted chocolate and blackcurrants. The balance between fruit and soil driven elements continues on the palate with a nice mix of cassis, pain grille, sandalwood, crushed blackberries and blueberries.

Not Available Tasting Notes

2008 Casa Piena Cabernet Sauvignon

Estate, Yountville, Napa Valley

The third crop is the charm. We’ve been saying it now for a few years emphasizing the growing pains associated with a young vineyard. The first two years can be kind of a mixed bag with both wines being solid but ever changing in barrel and bottle. With this third year, the 2008, we saw good stability of color and flavor and a wine that got steadily better as it aged. Coming from a vintage that still unjustly sits in the afterglow of 2007, the 2008 Casa Piena will surprise a lot of people both as a wine that surpasses anything we’ve ever done before and as the beginning of a high-quality trajectory for this young estate vineyard.

Not Available Tasting Notes

2007 Casa Piena Cabernet Sauvignon

Estate, Yountville, Napa Valley

The elegance that defines Casa Piena is certainly evident in the 2007 vintage, but it also contains a concentrated fruit quality that we weren’t sure was possible from this area. The fruit is darker in profile than the 2006, more purple/black than red/black, and much deeper at this point in the wine’s evolution. The soil driven elements are present but are masked by the layers of blueberries, blackberries and melted chocolate that the year gave us. This wine feels rounder than its predecessor and has in common with other great wines what we think sets them all apart, the ability to drink great young, middle-aged and old aged. We knew early on 2007 was something special and now here’s the realization of that first thought.

Not Available Tasting Notes

2006 Inaugural Casa Piena Cabernet Sauvignon

Estate, Yountville, Napa Valley

The aroma of the wine greets you before your nose even makes it to the glass.  Scents of rose petals, licorice, sweet tobacco leaf and blue and purple fruits mark the effusive nose.  The vineyard’s location on the Silverado Trail side of Yountville gives the wine a more elegant palate filled with notes of melted chocolate, espresso roast, lavender, creosote and complemented by a rich minerality that provides backbone and structure.  The tannins are evident early with the wine providing a firmer experience than we believed the site would suggest.  This wine definitely drinks better after an hour or so in decanter and is in no danger of fading for a decade in the cellar.

Not Available Tasting Notes


2011 Our Gang Cabernet Sauvignon

Estate, Yountville, Napa Valley

Each year we spend a lot of time considering which estate blocks will go into the Our Gang bottling.  This wine is made to embody all the essential characteristics of the Estate Vineyard and be approachable immediately upon release.  Created through block-by-block analysis and blending trials, the 2011 Our Gang has the hallmark acid backbone and light tannic frame that reminds us of the OG bottlings of the past.  The vintage-contributed spicy red fruit notes round everything out in the glass and deliver a lengthy, plush finish.

Acquire Tasting Notes

2010 Our Gang Cabernet Sauvignon

Estate, Yountville, Napa Valley

Only 124 cases produced of this 100% Estate Cabernet, this wine is a must have addition to your collection of Casa Piena wines. Harvest date was October 20th, 2010 for all lots. Thomas has loved the '10s since they were bottled and has remarked that they never really went into bottle shock. While the wine is drinking wonderfully right now, he is projecting that the Our Gang has the potential to peak in 10-15 years.Thomas is always hesitant to call the Our Gang our "second label" as the fruit profile and structure of the wine competes with most of the leading Cabernets from the area. This wine offers another look into the complexity and uniqueness of our Yountville Estate. True to the overall characteristics of the 2010 vintage, this wine is layered with soft, lush red fruit, chocolate, sweet tobacco and baking spices. The tannin structure is readily present but finishes with length and elegance. As typical for our property the wine shows a great backbone of acidity lending it the opportunity to pair with all different cuisines.

Not Available Tasting Notes

2009 Our Gang Cabernet Sauvignon

Estate, Yountville, Napa Valley

A vintage like 2009 really reminded us of what grows best at the estate. Given our 5 day picking window all the blocks from the estate came into the winery with similar levels of ripeness and tonnage per acre numbers.  When we finally sat down to blend in February 2011 what separated the wines had more to do with inherent style than overt qualitative differences. We recognized this was a nice problem to have but finding the answer required a few additional tastings throughout the month. Eventually the wines were divided across accessibility and fruit profile spectrums. The softer, redder fruited wines are what ultimately came to comprise this edition of Our Gang. We felt people would want to drink the second wine before the flagship bottling so it was blended to drink well young. The profile is classic California Cabernet: red currants, menthol, sweet tobacco and graphite. As good as this wine is, I almost hesitate to call it a second wine.

Not Available Tasting Notes


Thanks! Would you like to provide some more information?

x

Cart

Item(s) have been added to your cart.

Review your cart