Produced: Moon Mountain
Grape: 77% Cabernet Sauvignon, 17% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc, 3% Petit Verdot
Region: Sonoma County, California
From vineyards, located in the Mayacamas Mountains, on the western side of Mt. Veeder – this wine could be considered as one of the best values known.
Moon Mountain vineyards, spread high above the fog line, (at nearly 2,000 ft elevation) are overseeing Sonoma Valley. It would be fair to say that they have some of the most difficult wine growing conditions in California. Vines are growing on the steep, south-facing slopes, in a very unique soil punctuated by volcanic rock outcroppings, consist of thin, well-drained soils derived from volcanic ash and lava.
The combination of soils and more than generous sunshine stresses the vines to produce small crops of superbly concentrated Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc grapes. Vines are farmed organically and get as much personal attention, as possible.
Grapes are harvested by hand, in early morning hours, before the heat kicks in to preserve the rich flavors. After crushing the whole berries it underwent a hot fermentation to better extract color and rich tannin from the skins.
The wine was aged for 18 months in small, medium toast American and French oak barrels deep in the winery’s caves. It’s constant temperature of 60°F and very high humidity enhance the concentration of fruit flavors.
One of my colleagues used to call wines like this PRETTY. That’s what came to my mind, when I first tasted Moon Mountain. Wine, that makes you smile.
A beautiful dark ruby color in the glass, and sweet aroma of ripe dark berries. In my mouth it was a superb, impressive but silky wine, full of concentrated rich flavors.
It reminded me of sweet black currant, my mom grew in our backyard. The rich fruit flavors were gently dusted with cocoa and light spices of the oak. I loved the sweet mouthfeel of this wine, with never ending, generous finish.
I would say this is a very unique Sonoma Cabernet that would impress a lot of wine lovers. Approachable right now, but it can also improve with 3-5 years in the bottle.
No, this wine is not a collectible, it wouldn’t last for 10-15 years (my guess), but it also doesn’t cost $80-$100 per bottle. You can get this superb Cabernet Sauvignon for around $15 or less. Isn’t that an incredible value!
I just recently learned that Moon Mountain winery operates under the new management. I only hope that they will take full advantage of that unique place high in the mountains, and keep producing the same high quality, amazing wine.
Dry – Off dry- Medium sweet – Sweet
Light – Medium – Full body
No oak – Aged in oak
Retail price: around $15.00
Suggested food pairing:
Not so Greek Musaka,Beef Brisket with roasted grapes, Flank steak with shitakee sauce, Pistachio crusted leg of lamb, Beef Bourguignon and many more