Lail J. Daniel Cuvee Cabernet Sauvignon 2018
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
Nothing less than a tour de force, the Lail 2018 J. Daniel Cuvée is a Cabernet of soaring beauty and fruity depth that combines amazing richness with an altogether remarkable degree of real sophistication. It offers layer upon layer of blackcurrant fruit, creamy oak, black olives and loam, and, although it is a wine of considerable concentration and muscle, it is also uncannily wellpolished for a wine that is as young and muscular as it is. We do not use the term “classic” lightly, but classic it is, and, while we have yet to see a great many of the top Cabernet Sauvignons from what is a heralded vintage, it sets a high standard that will be hard to beat. It is that good!
Robin Daniel Lail’s heritage began in 1879 with the founding of Inglenook Vineyards by her great -granduncle, the iconic Captain Gustave Niebaum. By the early 1890s, this brilliant man’s obsession for achieving the pinnacle of excellence earned Inglenook wines the status of being considered by many as the finest produced in the country.
The determination to achieve excellence was carried forward through the decades following Niebaum’s death in 1908, with a crescendo in the thirty years following the repeal of Prohibition under the meticulous, passionate stewardship of John Daniel, Jr., Robin’s father. The collection of Cabernets coming from his years of ownership is still celebrated today as some of the finest red wines on earth.
Although Inglenook was sold in 1964, the passion for winemaking did not fade. Robin inherited her father’s respect for tradition. After working as the personal assistant to her mentor, Robert Mondavi, for five years, she left in 1982 to co-found Dominus Estate with Christian Moueix. The following year she co-founded Merryvale Vineyards with Bill Harlan, serving as president for a decade, before finally launching on her eponymous venture, Lail Vineyards, with her two daughters in 1995. Today her family honors his legacy with their relentless pursuit to produce wines second to none.
One of the most prestigious wines of the world capable of great power and grace, Napa Valley Cabernet is a leading force in the world of fine, famous, collectible red wine. Today the Napa Valley and Cabernet Sauvignon are so intrinsically linked that it is difficult to discuss one without the other. But it wasn’t until the 1970s that this marriage came to light; sudden international recognition rained upon Napa with the victory of the Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars 1973 Cabernet Sauvignon in the 1976 Judgement of Paris.
Cabernet Sauvignon undoubtedly dominates Napa Valley today, covering half of the land under vine, commanding the highest prices per ton and earning the most critical acclaim. Cabernet Sauvignon’s structure, acidity, capacity to thrive in multiple environs and ability to express nuances of vintage make it perfect for Napa Valley where incredible soil and geographical diversity are found and the climate is perfect for grape growing. Within the Napa Valley lie many smaller sub-AVAs that express specific characteristics based on situation, slope and soil—as a perfect example, Rutherford’s famous dust or Stags Leap District's tart cherry flavors.