H Block 2019
Napa Valley, California
Case of 6
RED BLEND Arietta "H Block" (902234)
70% Cabernet Franc, 30% Merlot, co-fermented
The core of the "H Block" cuvée comes from thirty-year-old Cabernet Franc vines planted on a rare volcanic outcropping just above the Hudson "Merlot Cathedral". The 2016 vintage was co-fermented, taking just the heart of the Merlot block and harvesting it on the same day as the Cabernet Franc. As usual, native yeast fermentation, and a long, carefully controlled maceration helped to meld together the two varieties, bringing forward the best of what they have to offer. The Cabernet Franc provides the cassis, blueberry, brown sugar character, while the Merlot brings dark chocolate to the aroma and a chewy richness to the finish.
Crafted from Cabernet Franc vines planted on a volcanic outcropping in 1986, and adjacent Merlot planted in the same year in clay-loam, the “H Block” has always been regarded as Arietta’s signature wine, paying great respect to the wines we love from the Right Bank of Bordeaux. Like the 2005 and 2013 vintages, the 2020 H Block is destined for a long evolution. Winemaker Andy Erickson’s note below describes the extraordinary care given to birthing this wine in the 2020 vintage and nurturing it from fermentation through bottling.
94-96pts Antonio Galloni