- Producer: he-li-an-thus - read about the Estate
- Winemaker: Jason Exposto
- Region (AVA): Soda Canyon (Napa Valley)
- Blend: 64% Cabernet Sauvignon, 17% Merlot, 14% Petit Verdot, 5% Cabernet Franc
- Vintage production: 255 cases
- Winery location: Oakville (Futo)
- Owners: Jessica Futo & Jason Exposto
- First vintage: 2013
- Drinking window: 2020-2050
About The Wine
he-li-an-thus is a single vineyard wine crafted by Jason Exposto and Jessica Futo. Located in an unmarked territory (AVA), Ed and Jan Brown’s vineyard in the southern Napa Valley foothills displays all of the virtues of distinction - exposition, exposure, climate, and complexity of soil.
On extremely rocky volcanic soils, at an elevation of 300ft at the southern end of the valley, the site experiences huge diurnal shifts in temperature, with very cool foggy mornings. But with a southwestern exposition, it is bathed in sunshine long into the evening. The resulting wine is singular in its three dimensional aromatics, and concentrated yet ethereal frame.
To capture the essence of the site, Jason believes that the vines and soil must receive lavish care and attention. Meticulous pruning, precise canopy work, use of compost tea preparations, and low yields are all practiced in tune with the rhythm of the growing season. At harvest, the fruit is picked over numerous passes based on physiological ripeness, regardless of variety. The composition of each individual co-fermentation is not predetermined, and varies dependent on vintage character. In the cellar, the fruit is sorted and fermented in small lots using native yeast. Each lot is barreled down into custom large format tight grained oak, as well as clay/ceramic vessels. Then aged on lees (with no racking), before being blended and bottled with no fining or filtration.
"Purity of fruit to this beautiful, young red, offering blackberries, blueberries and hints of flowers. Medium to full body, firm and silky tannins and a fresh and bright finish. Subtle softness at the end. Cofermented blend of 64 per cent cabernet sauvignon, 17 per cent merlot, 14 per cent petit verdot and five per cent cabernet franc. All about purity. Drink or hold."
96 points, James Suckling (May 2019)
"Coming from a single vineyard located off Old Soda Spring Road, the 2016 He-Li-An-Thus offers a complex style in its conifer, bay leaf, cigar wrapper, and bloody black fruits. With obvious minerality, full body, a seamless, elegant texture, and a great finish, drink it any time over the coming 20+ years."
96 points, Jeb Dunnuck (Jan. 2019)