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.
- Block from a 0.84 acre of Petit Verdot immediately adjacent to Brothers Vineyard at 800 feet
- Soils: Rhyolite (volcanic sand)
- Vines Planted: 1962, 1981, 2009
- Petit Verdot block named for Levi Philander Davis, who homesteaded the ranch in 1878
- Mild 2018 spring with just enough rain accumulation over winter
- Bud break and flowering a bit late, even weather conditions of abundant filtered light and even fruit set
- Filtered light due to wildfires elsewhere in California, creating layer of smoke very far up in atmosphere which reduced UV rays 30% – but never reached ground level to interact with grapes
- Relatively mild summer and fall, with few days above 100º F and even, moderate temperatures ensured slow, gentle ripening
- Last 2018 fruit harvested from Snowden on October 13
- Natural, wild yeast fermentation
- Fermented dry
- Aged 15 months in used French oak barrels
- Bottled unfined and unfiltered April 13, 2020
The family loves this wine for its flamboyance, fascinating floral aromas, subtle spicy edge, and the deep color so characteristic of Petit Verdot. This kind of “Goldilocks” vintage is what Petit Verdot waits for to show its stuff. Full of dark black cherries, licorice, and brambles, this untamed wine commands attention. Full, rich and chewy on the palate, it can take on grilled meat and spices which would wash out most wines.
100% Petit Verdot; alcohol: 14.3%; vines planted 1962, 1981, 2009; single block of Petit Verdot adjacent to Brothers Vineyard at 800 feet; grown in Rhyolite (volcanic sand) soils; last block on property to be harvested on 10/13/2018; fermented with only native yeasts; malolactic fermentation and aging in French oak barrels for 15 months; bottled unfined and unfiltered 4/13/2020.
- 100% Petit Verdot
- Alcohol: 14.3%
(91 - 94) Points
The Petit Verdot is another gorgeous wine in this range of the 2018s from Snowden. Deep, inky and fleshy in the glass, with accents of dried flowers and spice as well as tremendous textured richness and inner sweetness, the Petit Verdot is compelling.
The 2018 Petit Verdot Levi Philander Davis Vineyard is an absolutely gorgeous wine. It offers a beguiling mix of textural intensity and savory aromatics, but in the mid-weight style that is such a Snowden signature. Inky dark fruit, chocolate, spice, sage and menthol infuse the 2018 with quite a bit of nuance. 2023 – 2033
|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)|