Years ago during my first visit to Napa Valley we stopped by Clos Du Val winery with friends for a tasting. Clos Du Val is family owned and has an important history in Napa wine. (If you are a wine geek like me, you may know they were part of the 1976 Judgement of Paris blind tasting.) During our visit we were able to taste through their current offerings at the time as well as some library wines not listed. I am not joking when I say it was love at first sip! Since that day I have been a member of their wine club and the arrival of my quarterly shipment causes a lot of excitement in my house! Once per year I receive a bottle of Clos Du Val Three Graces in my shipment. This red blend is the first class wine of their portfolio and the special attention to detail during the selection of the blend, as well as the production of the wine are beautifully expressed when you open the bottle. Recently, their wine maker Ted Henry tasted this wine live on Instagram and explained how he goes barrel by barrel and selects the best of each grape varietal used to create this wine.
The Clos Du Val Three Graces 2015 is a blend of 54% Cabernet Sauvignon, 45% Cabernet Franc, and 1% Petit Verdot all grown in the Hirondelle Estate Vineyard. The juice ferments in stainless steel tanks and is pumped over three times per day. Aging takes place in 100% new oak barrels for two years. Since I also have a bottle of the 2016 in my cellar, I decided Valentine’s Day dinner with my family was a special occasion that called for the sharing this very special wine. Upon pouring in the glass: medium ruby color, with medium intensity aromas of black fruit, vanilla, cedar, smoke, and earth. Three Graces is a dry wine, with high acidity, high tannin, and is high in alcohol at 14.5%. It is full-bodied, with pronounced flavors of blackberry, black cherry, vanilla, and cinnamon. The flavors are very concentrated and are present on the long finish.
The 2015 is available on the Clos Du Val website but it’s a bit of a splurge at $175 a bottle. If you are planning a trip to Napa Valley I highly suggest a visit to their tasting room. Reservations are required ahead of time and they have several tasting experiences you may choose from. Other wines worth tasting from Clos Du Val are their Cabernet Franc which is a regular favorite of mine, as well as the Estate Chardonnay, and the Cabernet Sauvignon from the Hirondelle vineyard. These wines are always consistent and REALLY good! Do you have a favorite Clos Du Val wine? Let me know in the comments.
Picture above is my customized Fall 2019 shipment. (Club shipment was Three Graces 2016 and a Pinot Noir. I swapped out the Pinot Noir and added the Petit Verdot, Cab Franc, and Merlot.)