Pott 'Incubo' Cabernet Sauvignon 2017
|Region||California, Napa Valley, Mt. Veeder|
Though Aaron Pott is highly revered and vastly celebrated for the wines he makes for other vintners, Pott Wines is his own personal label that has become exceedingly admired and difficult to acquire. Aaron was first introduced to wine at the young age of ten during a stint abroad in France. Though fleeting, it was enough to capture him as an adult, and thus began a rich life of travel and winemaking. After gathering decades of winemaking experience in both France and California, Aaron and his wife Claire purchased a 75-acre parcel on Mt. Veeder in 2004. In 2007 Pott Wine was created, followed by their selection of single vineyards Cabernets in 2009.
Winemaker: Aaron spent six years working in Grand Cru Classé wineries in the Saint-Émilion region of France, first as Winemaker at Château Troplong Mondot and later as Director of Château La Tour Figeac. This gave him a profound insight into site-specific plots of land and the diversity of expression terroir can have on wine. Pott moved back to California in 1998 and has consulted on many esteemed projects since: Quintessa, Quixote, Stagecoach Vineyard, Blackbird Vineyards, St. Helena Winery, Somnium, & Perliss to name a few. Aaron can bend at will to produce wines of different styles and origins depending on a client’s needs, broadening his palate and providing him many brushes with which to paint. Pott Wines has given Aaron the opportunity to develop his own trademark style.
Vineyard: At his vineyard on Mount Veeder, lovingly named Chateauneuf-Du-Pott, organic and biodynamic farming are at the root of Aaron’s winemaking choices for Pott. This bucolic southeast facing slope sits at 1600ft of elevation and the soil is mostly sandstone and slate, something Aaron refers to as “the remnants of a cold sea”. With help from his wife Claire, they brew their own compost tea, a vital application to return nutrients to the ground which are then taken up by the vines and fed to each beautiful grape that eventually becomes a Pott wine. A thriving garden, organically fed chickens and rabbits, and all the shells from their somewhat outrageous personal oyster consumption all find themselves as part of the liquid-gold-steeped-in-nature-concoction that helps to quench the vineyard’s thirst for life.
Winemaking: In the cellar, Pott Wines see an intense sorting process with not one but four stages of selection allowing only the purest fruit to make its way to the large oak barrel and clay amphorae fermenters. Relying on spontaneous, native yeasts and employing hand punch-downs only, long, slow macerations ensue which delicately extract tannin and intense color as well. Fermentations are constantly monitored and reevaluated every day allowing for micro-adjustments based on the individual needs of each lot. After 20 months in barrel, the wines are bottled and spend up to a year at the winery before being released.
Exclusively sourced from their Mount Veeder estate, Pott “Incubo” is a blend of 98% Cabernet Sauvignon 2% Cabernet Franc and 100% delicious!
Fermented in a combination of wood and terra cotta vats. Aged 20 months in select French oak. Aromas of plum, black currant, violets, cherry, tobacco, cedar, mint, fennel, black truffle, nutmeg. Rich attack of beef bouillon, cherry, sweet plum, with toffee, dark chocolate, toasted almond. Finishing with plum, wild cherry, toffee and dark cocoa powder, Tannins are present, fine grain and age-worthy with beautiful length and focus.
2017 This is a real blockbuster Mt. Veeder Cabernet Sauvignon that combines wonderful fruit notes of black currant, blackberry, cigar box and black cherry, toffee and cocoa. The wine is fat and rich with deftly textured tannins, and solid structure. The weight is intense here and stays with you for ages as the finish goes from blackberry to violets to orange blossom, lingering for what seems like an eternity. There is a very small percentage of Cabernet Franc that lifts the mid palate and brightens the intense aromatics.
157 cases produced. Drink Now-2035
95 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: The deep garnet-purple colored 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Incubo takes some coaxing to reveal beautifully perfumed notes of lilacs, eucalyptus, chocolate box and unsmoked cigars with a core of blackcurrant cordial and plum puddling plus a hint of pencil lead. Medium-bodied, the palate has impressive intensity and purity with a firm line of ripe, grainy tannins and lovely freshness, finishing long and layered. (LPB) (12/2019)
The 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Incubo is a rich, savory wine that very much expresses the essence of Mt. Veeder. Iron, white pepper, game, mint and bright red cherry fruit give the 2017 its distinctive personality. This gorgeous, striking mountain Cabernet Sauvignon is going to need a few years to soften but I find it incredibly alluring, even in the early going.