Prior Release 2006

Arietta Merlot Hudson Vineyards 2006

The fabulous 2006 vintage was particularly kind to Merlot. The superb quality along with the quantity (2.2 tons to the acre!) of the Merlot from Arietta’s naturally shy bearing N Block on the Hudson Ranch in Napa/Carneros afforded us the opportunity to produce the first Arietta Merlot Hudson Vineyards since the 2002 vintage. The flavors of minerals interwoven with dazzling black berry fruits make for a surprisingly complex wine unlike any other Merlot produced in California. Wine critic Stephen Tanzer notes: “Good full ruby-red. Captivating aromas of black raspberry, smoked meat, bitter chocolate and minerals. Lush, sweet and seamless, with a deep core of raspberry and chocolate flavor firmed by minerality and complicated by a saline nuance. Deep, sexy, chewy wine, finishing with building tannins and excellent length. Merlot with real personality.” Production: 300 cases

Arietta Quartet 2006

Arietta Quartet, a Bordeaux-style blend, makes its debut in the 2006 vintage. “Quartet” is a musical reference to the four “voices” contributing to the blend: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, and Petit Verdot. The Arietta Quartet 2006 was sourced from Arietta’s blocks in the meticulously farmed Lucia Abreu Vineyard at the top of Howell Mountain, with the addition of Cabernet Sauvignon from the Madrona Vineyard in Saint Helena. The 2006 Quartet displays the hallmarks of the vintage-precocious and fruit-dominated aromatics, tremendous opulence, and a rich, sensual texture with fruit burying the substantial tannin in the wine. While Arietta Quartet 2006 sings in superb harmony upon release, the patience to wait several years will be rewarded with further evolution in bottle. Production: 500 cases

Arietta Cabernet Sauvignon 2006

Arietta’s fourth vintage of Cabernet Sauvignon marries fruit from three fabulous sites: Cabernet Sauvignon from the Thorevilos Vineyard on lower Howell Mountain and the Meteor Vineyard in Coombsville, and Petit Verdot from the Lucia Abreu Vineyard at the top of Howell Mountain. The blend is 96% Cabernet Sauvignon and 4% Petit Verdot. The 2006 Arietta Cabernet Sauvignon’s rich and attractive aromas are complemented by the ultra ripe fruit flavors and sensual texture of the wine. Critic Steve Tanzer notes: “Deep blue-tinged ruby. High-pitched aromas of cassis, blackberry, violet, menthol and mint. At once juicy and smooth, with intense black fruit flavors supported by a firm structural underpinning. Finishes long, fresh and youthfully medicinal, with fine tannins arriving late and coating the teeth. Elegant and strong.” Production: 170 cases

Arietta Red Wine Variation One 2006

The patience to leave Arietta’s Syrah on the vine until the end of October was a key factor in the creation of the richest, most harmonious Arietta Red Wine Variation One ever produced. The Syrah from Arietta’ sixteen rows in the rockiest part of Hudson Block 4 was co-fermented with Merlot from Arietta’s Hudson N Block. Winemaker Andy Erickson raised the percentage of Merlot in the 2006 Variation One to 45%, providing a good dose of civility to the wildness of the Syrah. The Arietta Red Wine Variation One 2006 is a generous, complex and exciting wine, unique in its blend and flavor profile, and not to be missed. Critic Stephen Tanzer writes: “Wild aromas of mocha, graphite and game, with a complicating note of roasted nuts. Sweet, plush and seamless, but with excellent energy to the layered black fruit flavors. This comes across as remarkably vibrant for a wine with a pH of 3.9. Finishes with building but very fine tannins and excellent length.” Production: 500 cases

Arietta Red Wine H Block Hudson Vineyards 2006

The majestic 2006 Arietta H Block reverts to its typical blend of 60% Cabernet Franc and 40% Merlot. This proportion is the same as the highly successful 2002 Arietta H Block as well as H Block’s mentoring wine, Chateau Cheval Blanc, one of the two First Growths of the Bordeaux Right Bank. The Cabernet Franc and Merlot are co-fermented and the wine is aged for twenty months in highest quality new French oak barrels. The plush character and relatively high pH of the 2006 Arietta H Block is a result of the very long 2006 growing season and an unhurried harvest. The breadth and ripe fruit of the wine will make it relatively flattering to drink while young, but tremendous stuffing and depth will promote development in the bottle for fifteen years, at least. Critic Stephen Tanzer notes: “Good deep ruby. Black raspberry, mocha and menthol on the nose. Sweet, creamy and densely packed, with rather wild flavors of raspberry, mocha, game and tobacco. Structured, backward wine with terrific length. The building tannins show full ripeness.” Production: 450 cases


Arietta White Wine “On The White Keys” 2006.

The Arietta White Wine “On The White Keys” makes its second appearance in the 2006 vintage. Fermented in a combination of stainless steel, new oak, and one year old oak barrels, the 2006 White Keys marries rare hillside Sonoma Mountain Sauvignon Blanc to old vine Semillon from Napa/Carneros. The result is a complex wine that opens with mouthwatering vibrancy and expands with dramatic richness and sensual texture. Aromas of honeysuckle, lemon zest, kumquat, pear skin, and stones provide lift to the rich, oily texture and superconcentrated flavors of the wine. The blend of the 2006 Arietta White Wine “On The White Keys” is 85% Sauvignon Blanc and 15% Semillon. While giving great pleasure if consumed upon release (especially with aeration) Arietta “On The White Keys” will improve in bottle for one to three years at least. Production: 450 cases