Proprietors Bill and Joan Smith are two of the nicest, most modest vineyard/winery owners I have ever met. They have turned La Jota into one of the great names in California winedom. Along with Randy Dunn, Peter Michael, and Beringer, they are getting more out of Howell Mountain fruit than any other California producer. The Smiths modestly give considerable credit to Helen Turley, who consulted at La Jota in 1992 and 1993, for opening their eyes to the possibilities of producing great red wines from Howell Mountain without the astringent tannin normally associated with this mountain appellation. The 1993 Cabernet Sauvignon 12th Anniversary Release is nearly as profound as the 1992. A compelling wine, it possesses an opaque black color, and a fabulous nose of chocolate, smoke, and cassis. Extremely full-bodied, with sweet tannin, low acidity, and fantastic concentration, this is a spectacular Cabernet Sauvignon for drinking now and over the next 25 years. (RP)
A well-oaked style, featuring lots of vanilla and toasty, smoky oak. Underneath, the currant, cherry and mineral flavors are full-blown, finishing in strong wood and plush tannins.
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