Textbook Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon “Fin de journée”
Textbook Napa Valley Chardonnay “Fin de journée”
Textbook Vineyards is one of six California wine projects (each boasting its own label) founded by growers/vintners Jonathan and Susan Pey — who grow and produce a handful of very small parcels of wines from western Marin County, Oakville (Napa Valley) and other vineyards across California’s most scenic and celebrated winegrowing regions. As stewards of the land and to ensure superb quality and style, Textbook’s wines are sustainably or organically farmed, with only about 15 barrels (375 cases) of each wine produced annually.
Jonathan studied in France and later earned a bachelor’s in agriculture and an MBA. He enjoyed a career in the ultra-premium wine industry and has worked with some of the best — Domaine Louis Jadot and Chateau de Pommard (Burgundy), Robert Mondavi and Sterling Vineyards (Napa Valley) and Australia’s iconic Penfolds.
Susan is a recognized leader in the “service” side of the wine industry with extensive training and experience in California and Europe. After attending university in Italy, she earned her bachelor’s in the United States and soon began working as wine director for a large, prestigious restaurant group based in the San Francisco Bay area. Today she’s one of the most prominent restaurant wine buyers in North America.
The core of the 2009 Textbook Cabernet Sauvignon “Fin de journée” comes from carefully selected single vineyard sites located within the Rutherford and Oakville American Viticultural Areas (AVAs). The Rutherford site exemplifies its character with incredible density, color and the classic “dusty” Rutherford nose. The Oakville District site delivers intense aromas, texture and high-quality grape tannins. Barrels were of the highest quality: 100 percent French, 30 percent new, three-year air-dried, medium toast. A touch of Merlot added a dollop of bright fruit and acidity. Fourteen months barrel maturation with three hand-rackings and one egg-white fining developed its wonderfully classic mouth-feel. They call this Cabernet Sauvignon “Fin de journée” (“at the close of the day”) to express the optimal time to enjoy drinking it. It’s a great companion to roasted curry beef tenderloin and carmelized onions, and it retails for around $29.
The 2010 Textbook Chardonnay “Fin de journée” comes from two superb Napa Valley sites. The first is located in the Los Carneros AVA, near the cold San Pablo Bay, where its long, cool season brings tropical and stone fruit aromas and terrific depth of flavor. The second site, representing 40 percent of the blend, is located at the Yountville Crossroads and is more than 25 years old. These rugged, older vines deliver a fraction of the yield of today’s more prolific clones, but the results are exceptional, offering unctuous texture and aromatic complexity. Nine months barrel maturation with battonage (lees stirring) helped develop texture and its classic mouth-feel. The balance (40 percent) was fermented in stainless steel to capture freshness. Cultured yeasts finished off the indigenous fermentation beautifully. The end result is a wine with bright fruit, depth, creamy texture and zippy acidity. It’s fantastic with smoked salmon bruschetta and garlic shrimp. It retails for around $24.
Both wineRegency Wine Shop,s are available at West Point Market, Papa Joe’s, 750 ML, North End Market, Riverside Wine & Imports, Wine Reserve of Medina and Mustard Seed Market.
/ Rob Hawk is a regional sales manager at Wine Trends, Inc.