If Napa Valley had an Official Wine Classification of 1985 (a century after the famous 1885 Classification in Bordeaux), Opus One, the legendary joint venture between Robert Mondavi and the Baron Philippe de Rothschild of Bordeaux's Mouton-Rothschild, would most certainly have ranked among the elite. Launched in 1984 with the dual release of the 1979 and 1980 vintages, Opus One has been the standard-bearer of American ultra-premium wine for more than 30 years and continues to be highly sought after by wine collectors and enthusiasts around the world. Modeled on the tradition of its famous First Growth parent, it is always a proprietary blend of Cabernet Sauvignon with small amounts of Cabernet Franc, Merlot, and Malbec.
In this video, winemaker Michael Silacci tastes and comments on the 2009 Opus One. Watch the video and read on for links and information about the wine, in stock now at K&L!
The 2009 Opus One Napa Valley ($199) is composed of 81% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Cabernet Franc, 6% Petit Verdot, 3% Merlot and 1% Malbec. The fruit comes from three meticulously managed vineyards in Napa Valley; it is all hand-sorted and moved gently, by gravity, from the destemmer to stainless steel fermenting tanks. And since there is only one Opus One, each fermentation tank is dedicated to a single lot, allowing the wine to develop at its own pace, drawing color and extracting beautiful flavor.
Notes on the 2009 Vintage from Opus One
After two consecutive rainless springs, Opus One's vineyards received almost six inches of rain in the spring of 2009. Cultivation and irrigation were adjusted to increase vine vigor and yield, striking a delicate balance in growing leaves adequate for photosynthesis but not so numerous as to mask fruit and over-emphasize herbal characters. The vintage saw cool temperatures during bloom and maturation with two short heat spells in September. The harvest began on September 21st under clear blue skies and concluded on October 20th after a record rainfall for October—obliging round-the-clock work to an exhilarating finish.
Aromas of black olive and minerals underlie more traditional notes of dark chocolate, cola and espresso in the 2009 Opus One. The wine’s sleek, creamy entry is supported by crisp acidity and a polished, supple mouthfeel. Flavors of ripe blueberry, cassis and licorice emerge on the palate. This tautly elegant and age-worthy wine simultaneously offers a smooth finish and a slight grip of tannin at the close.
During fermentation and maceration, component lots received an average of 20 days of skin contact prior to 17 months of barrel aging in new French oak. Judicious care and perfect growing conditions for Cabernet Franc resulted in a blend with the highest percentage of that varietal in the winery’s history. Bottled a year and a half prior to its release, the 2009 Opus One is comprised of 81% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Cabernet Franc, 6% Petit Verdot, 3% Merlot, and 1% Malbec."
Look for the QR code on the back label of each bottle of Opus One and scan with a smart phone to view 2009 Opus One videos and tasting notes.