Arguably the Top Mountain Cabernet Bargain in Napa

Ever since we first offered Tom Eddy’s stunning 2006, Wine Access clients have been buzzing about each vintage of the “Elodian” Cabernet Sauvignon. Over the last five vintages, the “Elodian” — arguably the top mountain Cabernet Sauvignon bargain in Napa Valley — has earned 216 perfect 5-star ratings and reviews. After the knockout 2012, we didn’t think Eddy could climb much higher — that is, until we tasted the 2013. Just 150 cases available for what we consider to be the top bargain in Napa Valley mountain Cabernet. Just $29.99 per bottle for “something special” from one of Napa's most revered winemakers in Robert Parker’s “epic and awesome ” vintage.

“2012 was exceptional, but I have not seen a vintage like 2013 in 43 years of harvests. ‘95 was a classic vintage in my opinion and 2013 eclipses that year in terms of conditions and finished product. Everything we touched just turned to gold. And I can’t explain it.” When The Wine Advocate got on board with what Tom’s colleagues already knew, Robert Parker would declare 2013 as the “one of the most epic and awesome vintages the north coast of California has ever produced.”

Today’s 2013 “Elodian” shows how an iconoclastic veteran winemaker can elevate even the most brilliant vintage. But if you ask Tom, he’s always quick to credit everyone and anyone else, from the picking crew to the growers to the vineyards. “It’s the potpourri of multiple vineyards that is ‘Elodian’,” Eddy offered. “During any given harvest, the ‘Elodian’ can be a blend of up to eight different vineyard sites throughout Napa, each contributing a different quality and adding to complexity of the wine.” In 2013, Tom sourced Cabernet from five different vineyards.

First there’s Bella Vista Vineyard on the nosebleed slopes of Diamond Mountain, providing structural backbone to the “Elodian.” Brandlin Ranch, fast becoming the most coveted Cabernet patch on Mount Veeder along with Lokoya, has well-draining soils that have proven ideal for broad-shouldered, late-maturing Cabernet over the last century. The third mountain ingredient, of course, is the legendary Stagecoach Vineyard, which turns out some of the most powerfully concentrated Cabernets in the valley. Just a stone's throw away from there on Pritchard Hill, home to several of Napa’s most profound reds, Tom debuted grapes from Greeg Mountain Ranch , 1,250 feet above sea level. Elkington Vineyard on Atlas Peak, the third-highest in Napa and recognized for the cold overnight temperatures that slow maturation, imparts its signature acidity and hedonistic, dark-berry fruit.

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Deep garnet core to purple on the edge. The aromas on the 2013 are the most complex yet for the “Elodians” we’ve tasted: violets, black cherries, cigar box, black licorice, and olive tapenade. Opulent and broad up front, the mid-palate is lush and velvety, packed with ripe flavors of bright cherries and blueberry compote enveloped in fine tannins and pervasive acidity. Drinking extraordinarily now, but will keep for 15-20 years in a cool, dark cellar.

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