- Producer: Lail Vineyards - read about the Estate
- Winemaker: Philippe Melka
- Region (AVA): Napa (Napa Valley)
- Blend: 100% Cabernet Sauvignon
- Vintage production: 955 cases
- Winery location: Rutherford
- Owner: Robin Lail
- First Vintage: 1995
- Drinking window: 2018-2040+
About the Wine:
Lail Vineyards' flagship wine is named for John Daniel Jr., ancestor to the Lail Vineyards legacy. A 21st century interpretation of the family’s highly-acclaimed Cabernet blends of the past, the J. Daniel Cuvée is a beautifully integrated, Bordeaux style blend of estate and premium vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon selections.
The J. Daniel Cuvée is always 100% Cabernet Sauvignon, for which there are three vineyard sources: the Heimark Vineyard in Calistoga, the Vine Hill Ranch Vineyard in Oakville and the famed Mole Hill Vineyard on Howell Mountain, within which Robin's home is located.
This unique combination of 'Grand Cru' sites makes the J. Daniel Cuvée the only wine in Napa to blend fruit from Oakville and Howell Mountain: the key to this Cabernet's stunning depth and complexity.
Lail Vineyards J. Daniel Cuvée Cabernet Sauvignon 2016
"One-hundred percent Cabernet Sauvignon aged 20 months in 75% new French oak, the 2016 J Daniel Cuvee is deep garnet-purple in color and offers up exuberant notes of crème de cassis, chocolate-covered cherries, wild blueberries, violets and unsmoked cigars with touches of garrigue, fragrant earth, powdered cinnamon, black olives and tree bark. Medium to full-bodied, the palate is built like a brick house, with a solid frame of firm, grainy tannins and seamless freshness supporting the taut, muscular fruit, finishing long and minerally."
100 points, Lisa Perrotti-Brown (The Wine Advocate, Oct. 2018)
"The flagship 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon J. Daniel Cuvee takes things up to whole other level and is a thrill a minute. Made from 100% Cabernet Sauvignon, from the Mole Hill, Vine Hill Ranch, and Heimark vineyards that spent 20 months in 75% new oak, it sports a deep purple color as well as a spectacular bouquet of crème de cassis, black raspberries, graphite, and spicy oak. Possessing incredible purity, full-bodied richness, building structure, and a big finish, it’s a quintessential, age-worthy Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon that I suspect will require more than a decade to hit prime time and will keep for 3+ decades. Bravo!"
98+ points, Jeb Dunnuck (Jan. 2019)