CHARLES KRUG Winery lost their legendary leader Peter Mondavi Sr. on Feb. 20 of this year at the age of 101. There is no disputing he steered the business through thick and thin to keep this iconic winery in the hands of his family. Today, sons Peter Jr. and Marc guard their father’s legacy of fine wine production — all you have to do is experience the latest vintage of their flagship wine: Charles Krug Vintage Selection Cabernet Sauvignon, which was first produced in 1944. Peter’s father, Cesare Mondavi, bought Charles Krug in 1943. Krug is the oldest operating winery in Napa Valley, founded in 1861 by Prussian immigrant Charles Krug and has only had one other owner before the Mondavis purchased it. It’s a destination in the Napa town of St. Helena on Highway 29.
fyi: Peter Mondavi Sr. and Robert Mondavi, founder of Robert Mondavi Winery in Oakville, were brothers. Charles Krug Winery produces fine wines under the Charles Krug / Peter Mondavi Family label as well as their classic everyday wines branded CK Mondavi Family Vineyards.
Charles Krug Cabernet Sauvignon Estate Grown Napa Valley 2013, $30: A great vintage — 2013 — and the Yountville vineyards owned by the Peter Mondavi Sr. family combined to produce this knock-out Cab. Intense fruit; rich, round tannins; sturdy acidity; well-infused oak — it begs you to take another sip. Flavors of dark currant, dark berries, cherry do a dance in your mouth. Tannins have good grip; lovely smoke-infused caramel notes highlight the finish. It’s a nimble, pretty wine with alluring aromas and juicy flavors. This is a wonderful bottle to experience the flavors of Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon.
Charles Krug Vintage Selection Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley 2012, $100: This star is so lush and inviting you can “taste” it with your nose: intense black currant, dark cherry, espresso coffee bean, lovely spicy, toasted oak. In the mouth, you experience refined tannins, dark berries, dark chocolate and the alcohol rippling through. Peter Mondavi Jr. calls it “intense, robust” and says it can age 40 years. It’s grown at two Mondavi estate vineyards in Yountville at the base of the Mayacamas Mountains. The Mondavis have made the Vintage Selection Cab since 1944.
You can reach Sandra Silfven at firstname.lastname@example.org.