Hess Lion Tamer Red Wine Napa Valley 2016


Winemaker Notes

Hess affectionately calls this wine “Tamer” because blending Lion Tamer is both challenging and rewarding especially when Malbec is the core. Malbec on its own brings heady floral aromas of violets and can be what I call the wild child. Big, bold and juicy upon entry, Malbec is virtually loaded with flavor. When Zinfandel, Petite Sirah and Cabernet Sauvignon are layered in, you get complex layers of blackberries, milk chocolate, black plums and exotic perfume that carry throughout a plush texture and a ripe juicy core of black fruits.

The signature of Lion Tamer is a generous palate of black raspberry and surprisingly lush tannins. For the 2015 vintage they found a secret blender – Mourvedre! Just 2% of the blend but WOW what a great touch of bright red fruit it brings. This vintage explodes with brightness – it jumps right out of the glass. Concentrated in the mid-palate and graceful in its power, the wine has gorgeous notes of cassis, clove and candied licorice wrapped in bright cherry and vanilla.

Blend: 50% Malbec, 23% Zinfandel, 11% Petite Sirah, 6% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Petit Verdot, 4% Merlot, 2% Mourvedre

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