Since 1955, the Snowdens have farmed their vineyard high above the Napa Valley. In addition to the stunning views of St. Helena, Rutherford and the San Francisco Bay, the estate offers four separate sites producing remarkably complex and individualistic wines. Winemaking duties are in the capable hands of Diana Snowden Seysses. The winery produces Bordeaux blends from their estate vineyards and a small amount of Sauvignon Blanc from a small parcel they call the Lost Vineyard.
- Cabernet from the Pool Block, the lowest estate vineyard at 650 feet with a West exposure
- Cabernet from the Lost Orchard Vineyard at the top of the property at 850 feet, coolest black on property
- Merlot from Lost Vineyard block
- Soils: Ryolite (volcanic sands)
- CS Vines Planted: 1997
- CS Clone 8 on 110R rootstock
- 2019 growing season began with much-needed rains
- Water reserves replenished, vines grew quickly
- Intensive vineyard work to keep up with ground vegetation & canopy management
- Removal of lateral shoots & excess fruit critical to maintain balance
- Even growing season without heat spikes even in fall
- Harvests at leisure, chosen at optimal ripeness, resulting in generous and plush wines with exceptional aromatic complexity
- Hand harvested between 9/24 – 10/11/2019
- Wild yeast fermented
- Aged 17 months in 50% new French oak barrels
- Bottled 4/12/2021
The 2019 vintage gave us a gentle Ranch Cabernet, with a bouquet offering sweet tobacco, black cherries and muscovado sugar. The palate is broad and generous with layers of dark fruit and soft tannins. This is a quintessential Napa Cabernet ready to be enjoyed immediately and often.
- 77% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Merlot, 1% Petit Verdot
- Alcohol: 14.5%
- 956 cases produced
77% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Merlot, 1% Petit Verdot; alcohol: 14.5%; soils: rhyolite (volcanic sands); fruit from Pool Block, 650 ft altitude and Lost Vineyard, 850 ft. altitude; vines planted 1997; hand harvested from 9/24 – 10/11/2019; wild yeasts only; fermented dry; aged 17 months in 50% new, 50% neutral French oak barrels; bottled unfined and unfiltered on 4/12/2021.
The 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon The Ranch is elegant and nuanced, with the transparency that is typical of many of the 2019s here. This is a decidedly old-school leaning Cabernet that leans towards the more delicate end of the spectrum. 2024 – 2034
Reasonably priced for a Napa Cab, Snowden’s 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon The Ranch boasts aromas of cedar and cherries, plus delicate thyme and sage notes. It’s medium to full-bodied, plush and easy to drink, smooth and supple across the palate and silky on the finish. 2022 – 2030
Ripe and direct, with friendly mulled plum and linzer torte laced with sassafras and cedar. Open-knit through the toasty finish. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Petit Verdot. Drink now through 2030.
The 2019 Ranch bottling of cabernet sauvignon from Diana Snowden Seysses includes twenty-two percent merlot and one percent petit verdot in this vintage. It is raised in fifty percent new oak and tips the scales at 14.5 percent octane. Like all three of the Snowden wines that I tasted for this report, the wine shows a lovely sense of elegance from gentle extraction and non invasive winemaking. The wine offers up a refined aromatic constellation of red and black cherries, cigar wrapper, a lovely base of soil, a touch of Rutherford Dust-like spice tones, incipient eucalyptus and cedary new oak. On the palate the wine is pure, focused and full bodied, with lovely transparency down to the soil, suave, buried tannins, excellent balance and grip and a long, complex and very classy finish. Fine juice. 2033 – 2085
|Proprietors||Scott and Joann Snowden and Randy and Janet Snowden, managing directors of Snowden Vineyards|
|Annual Production||2,900 9L cases|
|Farming (Sustainable, organic, biodynamic)||Sustainable (including no chemical herbicides used in vineyards)|