Carter Cellars Coliseum Block Cabernet Sauvignon 2011

Tasting Notes

Extremely low yields allowed this vineyard to trump the vintage and produce a very prodigious Cabernet Sauvignon. Inky black to the core, dark berry aromas with spice tones intertwine and flow into a rush of dark fruit, licorice and bitter chocolate. There is an eager sense of energy infused in this wine that lends one to think that the vines were happy with this growing season. The complex and layered finish is an array of cassis, dried herbs and faint amber notes that are surrounded by plush, but subdued tannins. While in need of some bottle age, a suggested decant is recommended if you choose to consume it within 5 years, and age it for 10 or more years to reveal its true essence.

"Bright full ruby.  Slightly jammy dark berry aromas complicated by pepper, olive oil and oak; a bit zinfandel-like.  A sweet, medium-bodied fruit bomb in the mouth, with dark berry flavors nicely accented by licorice, herbs and pepper.  Juicy and still a bit youthfully imploded; long and energetic on the aftertaste." - Barrel Sample

~ Stephen Tanzer


Map of the Coliseum Vineyard

The History of the Coliseum Vineyard

Twenty years ago people thought Henry Hossfeld was crazy because of the slope and the solid rock he was trying to grow vines on in the south-eastern Napa hills in an area known as Soda Canyon.  In fact, at planting, each vine hole was fractured into the terraces with a stick of dynamite. This dramatic site, steep and terraced like a Roman Coliseum has distinctive volcanic soils and as such, the resulting Cabernet fruit is also quite distinctive; structured graphite and herbal scented, compelling flavors. Today, we reap wines with massive fruit extraction, inky black color, and powerful tannins.

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The Vineyards

Explore the varied Napa vineyards of Carter Cellar's handcrafted wines, from the Beckstoffer To Kalon Vineyard to the Truchard.



June 2 - 5, 2016
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