Aperture Cabernet Sauvignon, Del Rio Ranch | 2017


Jesse Katz is quickly becoming a household name for his critically acclaimed reds which showcase the power and beauty of Sonoma. His résumé reads like a greatest hits album: Robert Foley, Lancaster Estate, Screaming Eagle, and Pétrus. A couple of years ago, Katz made big headlines when a 6L bottle of his Cabernet Sauvignon “The Setting, Glass Slipper” sold for a record-breaking $1 million at auction. Are you listening?

Katz’s flagship label is Aperture, which focuses on Bordeaux-style blends from premier cool-climate Sonoma sites. In 2019, I was introduced to Jesse’s wines when I was a ghost writer for SommSelect; my assignment was his Aperture Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2016. Doing my due diligence, I reached out to Jesse, trying to uncover what made Alexander Valley different than Napa. Have you ever heard of the catchy slogan, "Warm days, cool nights?” Well, in Alexander Valley the opposite is true, if the grapes are above the fog line. The nights are warm, and the days are cool, which creates a unique, even-keel ripening season for Cabernet Sauvignon.

A total terroir gem, the Del Rio Ranch is located at the top of Chalk Hill Road and is one of the steepest vineyards sites in Sonoma. Made from pure Cabernet grown on chalky volcanic soils, Katz’s highly selective grape sorting process pays-off in every drop of the glass. Like its eye-catching label, the wine is exuberant with brilliant blues, purples, and zesty greens, and unlike the quintessential Napa style, the palate finds softness in concentration. For me, I always get a wonderful, exotic fruit in Jesse's wines, which I can never quite pinpoint (It's like a jackfruit got together with a Chinese plum and had a baby). Whatever the mystery is, I forget that I'm drinking and thoroughly enjoying California Cab, and that's the magic of Jesse Katz. ~Allegra A

United States
Main Grape
Cabernet Sauvignon
Winemaking style
Try with
Rib Roast and Truffled Mashed Potatoes

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