Something about Opus One
The world-renowned Opus One was created in the 1970’s as a result of a merger between two visionaries, Baron Philippe de Rothschild (lengendary Bordeaux wine magnate and owner of Château Mouton-Rothschild in Pauillac) and Robert Mondavi (an icon in the history of American wine with a namesake wine empire in California). It was their aim to develop a New World equivalent to a Bordeaux First Growth in the Napa Valley region of California.
The exceptional style of Opus One resulted from the combination of their talent, their vision and the unique terroir of the Oakville AVA (an Eden for Cabernet Sauvignon). Today, this highly sought-after wine is produced from four different parcels, two parcels making up the famous 40-hectare To-Kalon vineyard, along with the River and Ballestra Parcels surrounding the Opus One winery. While the exact proportions depend on vintage, the blend is dominated by Cabernet Sauvignon, complemented by Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Malbec, reminiscent of Bordeaux’s Left Bank. The wines are vinified separately before being matured in French oak barrels for a period of 18 months. They stay in the cellar, ageing in bottle for another 15 months, before being released on the market in October of each new year.
Four years before his death in 2008, Robert Mondavi sold Robert Mondavi Winery to the Constellation Brands wine conglomerate, along with his 54% share in Opus One. The project, which also saw the addition of a new parcel known as To-Kalon South, is now jointly managed by the Rothschild family and Constellation brands.
In the world of fine wines, Opus One has no equal. Its emblematic blue label tells the story of the union between two visionaries, the merger of two dynasties to produce one iconic wine: a Bordeaux-style Grand Vin from the greatest terroirs of Napa.
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Dark cherries, plums, smoke, licorice, new leather and menthol race across the palate in the 2013 Opus One. Firm yet also voluptuous, the 2013 has it all. The combination of fruit and structure is superb. Today, the 2013 reminds me of the 2010 when it was young, especially in its energy and pure power. The flavor remain quite primary, one of the signatures of this great Napa Valley vintage.
The greatest Opus ever. Terrific aromas of crushed black currants, blueberries and flowers with hints of sweet tobacco. Roses continue to exude opulence and class. Full body, superb balance of ultra-fine tannins and vibrant acidity. Complex aftertaste of black fruits and citrus fruit. Extremely persistent. So approachable now and enjoyable. But will be even better in 2019 and beyond. 79% cabernet sauvignon, 7% cabernet franc, 6% merlot, 6% petit verdot, 2% malbec. This will always be beautiful to drink.