The 1998 vintage, my first vintage of Vérité, was a challenging year. The influence of El Niño from the Pacific Ocean made for a very cold, rainy and wet season. We received almost twice the average amount of rainfall from late October to early June, which pushed bud break into early April and thus made for a challenging flowering. However, it was a great vintage to showcase how pruning, careful vineyard operations and sensitivity to the needs of each micro-cru can create a beautiful wine – even in a challenging year. Harvest took place October 10th through October 26th.
– Pierre Seillan, Vigneron
The wine is a deep ruby red, moving to a glowing garnet rim. The bouquet is composed by explosive notes of just-picked, small wild strawberries, dried rose petals, worn leather, game and forest floor. Layers of tobacco, holiday spices, pine tree and cocoa round out this remarkably vibrant library wine. As the taut, precise structure unfolds across the palate, the terroir of Sonoma’s top vineyard plots, grown and harvested by micro-cru, is expressed in gritty notes of iron, volcanic rock and granite. A strong tannic grip completes the mouthfeel before releasing the taster to a softer, lingering finish. This wine maintains a stunning core of ripe fruit through the decades. In a storm-fraught year, the Cabernet vines nonetheless thrived. With age, a brooding, intense season has matured into a charming, expressive and unforgettable wine; its signature liveliness is a testament to the integrity of this legendary first vintage of La Joie.
– February 2018
70% Cabernet Sauvignon
Notes of cedar, tobacco leaf, Christmas fruitcake, blackcurrants and loamy soil emerge from this beautifully constructed, rich, full bodied effort. It comes across like a serious Pauillac from Bordeaux.
A mix of up-front, supple-textured mocha, currant and vanilla, and harder-edged tannins that gang up on the finish; firming, with leather, herb and a chewy, gritty aftertaste. Drink now through 2008.