2005 Verite - La Joie

UNITED STATES / CALIFORNIA / SONOMA
  • 100 WA
  • 95 IWC
  • Variety
    Proprietary Blend
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SKU: 60330-2005-750-3A
  • International Wine Cellar | Rating: 95

    ($150; 67% cabernet sauvignon, 12% merlot, 12% cabernet franc, 7% petit verdot and 2% malbec) Good bright ruby. Black cherry, minerals, musky Cuban tobacco and leather on the nose and palate, lifted by a minty nuance. Lush on entry, then concentrated, sweet and penetrating, with superb focus and sap to the middle palate. Wonderfully expressive even if still youthfully unevolved. Finishes with full but ripe tannins and a compelling combination of sweetness and energy.
    Author: Stephen Tanzer
    Issue: May/June 2008
  • Wine Advocate | Rating: 100

    The myth perpetrated by Old World wine proponents is that California wines don't age. Those critics need to taste Verite, because these wines are aging far slower than I imagined. The 2005 La Joie (67% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Franc, 7% Petit Verdot and 2% Malbec) tips the scales at 14.7% alcohol. It received the same 18 months in 100% new oak. It is interesting that Pierre Seillan said that he thought the high-elevation vineyards of Sonoma that go into Verite (self-serving, os course) are his greatest sites in the world for Bordeaux varietals. But remember - he's from Bordeaux! This multidimensional wine, which enjoyed a 4-5 day cool, pre-fermentation maceration, has a provocative bouquet of blackberry, cassis, new saddle leather, Christmas fruitcake, graphite and high-quality unsmoked cigar tobacco. It is profound, extremely full-bodied and massive in the mouth, but not heavy or astringent in any way. This is perfection in a glass, and a tribute to what Sonoma can achieve. Give this wine another 4-5 years, and drink it over the following 30+ years.
    Author: Robert Parker
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  • "The name Verite, French for truth, stands for wines that reflect their soil with integrity." The artisanal project of the late legendary California wine pioneer Jess Jackson, Verite sets out to produce serious Bordeaux-quality wines, with distinct California charm. To carry out his vision, Jackson imported Bordelais winemaker Pierre Seillan to craft three separate cuvees, each in the style of individual Bordeaux communes.

    From high elevation vineyards in Sonoma County's Alexander Valley, Knight's Valley, Bennett Valley and Chalk Hill appellations, comes "La Joie," "Le Desire," and "La Muse." While "La Joie" is a Cabernet-based nod to Paulliac, "Le Desire" and "La Muse" aspire toward Cabernet Franc-friendly Saint-Emilion and Merlot-centric Pomerol respectively. Not unlike their Bordeux counterparts, these wines are built to last 30-50 years, so to expect a typical fruit-driven, vivacious wine would be a mistake. The care taken to craft these profound efforts has been recognized by Robert Parker, who has awarded seven 100-point scores for Verite's three blends, the first time a Sonoma County winery has received this many perfect scores.

    California is the heartland of wine production in the US, and the state that brought prestige to American wine thanks to the pioneers who built early wineries like Staglin, Beringer, Ridge, Mayacamas and Chateau Montelena in the 1800s. Its large geographic area ensures a great diversity in growing sites, varieties grown, and quality levels. Generalizations about the state's wines have numerous exceptions; however, a few key facts generally hold true—ample sunshine, dry weather during the growing season, and moderate winters prevail. Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon continue to dominate the state's production—albeit in continually smaller percentages, as growers continue to diversify. More than 100 different varieties can be found throughout the state.

    Collector Data For This Wine

    • 161 bottles owned
    • 47 collectors