Paso Robles, San Luis Obispo County, California
Rich in fruit upon release, with structure to age comfortably for 7 to 10 years.10 Years
Delicious with rosemary-seasoned ribeye served with garlic roasted potatoes with parsnips and fennel.
The third in a trio of strong vintages for Paso Robles, the wines of 2014 are showing dense and aromatically expressive, and are reminiscent of 2004. With less than half the usual winter rainfall in the ground, spring growth rocketed as degree days racked up at a faster pace than we’ve seen in a decade. A somewhat warm veraison period at the end of July pushed tannin levels upward and led to the earliest picking dates on record for most of our vineyard blocks. Achieving sugar ripeness was never in question in this warm vintage, but we certainly benefitted from the J. Lohr “early water deficit” farming practices that hasten seed ripeness and achieve early phenolic maturity. 2014 Hilltop Cabernet Sauvignon is showing brambly fruit aromas, a dense texture and bright acidity on the finish.
Hilltop Cabernet Sauvignon is grown on a handful of select vineyard sites in the Paso Robles AVA. Blessed with long summer days of intense sunshine, our near 100°F daytime temperatures are followed with chilly, ocean-cooled nights in the 50s. These Cabernet vines are naturally stressed in the dry, often very gravelly, and sometimes lime shale-laden soils. Water is at a premium in these vineyards, enabling the viticulturist to fine-tune irrigation, producing the darkest fruit with resolved tannins year after year.