2009 Lot No. 1
The concept of Lot wines at Louis M. Martini dates back to 1968 when Louis P. Martini, Michael Martini's father, first made luxury Cabernet Sauvignons from selected barrels which he named by lot numbers. At that time, Louis P. Martini was making Cabernets in the league with other Napa Valley greats such as George De Latour, Heitz Martha's Vineyard and Robert Mondavi. Sourcing of his fruit likely included Monte Rosso grapes and other vineyards from his friends in the Napa Valley. The Martini lot wines produced in the late 1960s and early 1970s were considered among the most collectible of Martini's wines Today, Michael Martini continues to enjoy access to premium Napa Valley vineyards and to blend Cabernet Sauvignon from the best mountain top AVAs, just like his father did.
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In The Vineyard
The 2008 harvest in Napa Valley was somewhat challenging, with drought preceding a hard frost, leading to an uneven set and small crop. Heat spikes hit during bloom in May and again as harvests began in August, resulting in some vineyards harvesting both earlier and later than normal. Although a small crop was delivered, the exceptional quality is expected to outweigh the crop size. In general, the resulting red wines are very rich and full-bodied, plenty of tannins for aging.
In The Cellar
The grapes were sourced from some of the most coveted vineyards in the Napa Valley, dominantly from mountain top AVAs. The grapes were hand-picked in the early morning hours to keep the fruit cool and were then hand sorted to keep only the best possible fruit. All fruit is hand sorted, grapes are then destemmed and not crushed, leaving about 75% whole berries in the fermentors. The grapes were gravity-fed into open top tanks at our micro-winery, Cellar No. 254, which was built as an annex to our main facility. The must received 3-4 weeks of skin contact and was fermented at warm temperatures (max. 90°F), after inoculation with the yeast. The wine then underwent malolactic fermentation, was racked as needed, and aged in 100% new French oak barrels for 22 months prior to bottling.