Deep, juicy red berries, cherries and pomegranate at the core. Surrounding the fruit are cedar, bay leaf, black olive and allspice in the Communication Block Cabernet 2011. Toasty barrel lightly frames the wine. The fruit, the vineyard and the place (top of Mt Veeder) are co-stars. Barrel lends support. Dynamite Cabernet, at 7 years of age showing nuance as well as bright, bold fruit. Medium acidity, smooth tannins, generous flavors and a rich, round texture. 2011: a sleeping dog vintage that is ready to wake up and do groovy dog tricks. Seriously, the producers who made quality Napa Cab in 2011 are beginning to break them out (again) and impress the socks out of their customers.
Near the top of Mt Veeder and on the Napa/Sonoma border is “Lampyridae,” as remote a vineyard that you’ll find (or not find) in Napa Valley. It’s owned and farmed by the owners of Communication Block, John and Ashley Derr. Aaron Pott makes the wine. Tiny production – around 100 cases made each vintage. From the winery: “The Communication Block wine project fulfilled the desire for Lampyridae Vineyards produce stunning wines and support the education of children who need technology to communicate. Our commitment supports the Napa Valley Kids Connect program which promotes academic achievement for children who have severe communication needs.” Read more about the winery and the wines here.
I also tasted with the Derrs the equally fantastic: 2016 Grenache from their “Lampyridae Vineyard” as well. Only 14 cases made so I did not review it. If you do buy the 2014 from them, do yourself a favor and add the Grenache to your order.
For all the Communication Block/Lampyridae wines I’ve reviewed, GO HERE.