Skip to content
Napa Cabernet and the 2018 Vintage - Wow!

Napa Cabernet and the 2018 Vintage - Wow!

The north coast of California is a beautiful place. A quick drive north of San Francisco will lead you to rolling hills lined with vines whose grapes will be transformed into wine that people all over the world will enjoy in the coming years. Along with its undeniable beauty, Napa has become a place known for creating exceptional wine. Among those are the bottles of cabernet sauvignon that have been continually recognized for their excellence. This recognition all started back in 1976 on a day that would change California winemaking forever. On the fateful day of the Judgement of Paris, judges blind tasted wines from both the most celebrated regions in France alongside representations from California. As we can all assume from the booming success of California wine today, these wines that were thought to be inferior held their own and in some cases were given higher ratings than the top wines from Burgundy and Bordeaux. From that day forward, California wine was on the map and has been evolving ever since.

It’s almost impossible to discuss Napa Valley without bringing up America’s favorite grape - cabernet sauvignon. Cabernet thrives in Napa’s warm, but not too warm, climate with its influence from the San Pablo Bay that creates morning fog and a cooling effect at night that helps the grapes maintain their acidity. That acidity helps to balance the ripe and powerful flavors of the cabernets that we all have grown to know and love. Just like any wine growing region, there are years when the weather doesn’t quite cooperate the way that winemakers hope. There can be extreme heat, spring frosts, too much or too little rain and so many other hurdles that are out of the control of the winemaker. They are tasked with creating the best wines possible from whatever mother nature hands them. There are, however, years where everything seems to fall into place. These are the years that go down in history as having harvests that wine lovers will cherish and buy up as soon as bottles are released. One of those vintages for Napa Valley cabernet sauvignon was 2018.

After a particularly difficult year for California winemakers in 2017, 2018 was a welcome and much needed change of pace. In 2017, we saw wildfires tear through the valley having a major influence on the grapes with some vineyards seeing their vines and winemaking facilities burned to the ground. The area slowly but surely recovered as best it could and was rewarded with an unexpectedly cool spring that lengthened the growing season. This stroke of fate retained the acidity in the cabernet sauvignon grapes that is pivotal in creating a balanced and complex wine. The cool spring caused a slow ripening and pushed harvest out into late fall. Some winemakers even harvested into November as their cabernet sauvignon grapes reached their peak.

Not only did the weather cooperate but there was an abundance of grapes on the vines in 2018. Winemakers practiced their usual pruning to ensure quality grapes, but saw huge clusters on their vines when harvest came around. This reflects the optimal conditions and also means that there is more wine to go around. When there’s a lot of good quality grape juice, a lot of great wines end up on the shelves at the kind of prices we see when there is healthy supply.

All of these factors led to Wine Spectator awarding the 2018 Napa cabernet sauvignon vintage 99 points. If you haven’t had the chance to try one of these exceptional wines, don’t fret. Komo Cellars has you covered. Check out our 2018 Napa Cabernet 3 Pack here. We know you’ll be as impressed as we were. Cheers!

Written by Komo Cellars