Heitz Cellar, Martha’s Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 1975
I have nothing but admiration for Heitz Cellar, and writing a profile on them this year gave me an excuse to try a number of bottles of their wines. While the 1974 Martha’s Vineyard tends to win all the attention, the 1975 also clearly ranks as one of the most thrilling Napa Cabernets produced during the 20th century, and I really like the wine’s tension and reserve. Complex aromatics of red and black fruit, cedarwood, dried rose and cocoa are followed by a powerful, beautifully balanced wine with a firm core of tannin, fruit and fresh acids. A few hours in the decanter really help this still-youthful Cabernet expatiate. To my palate, this could go head to head with the handful of great wines produced in Bordeaux in 1975 such as La Mission Haut Brion and Pétrus.
Taster: William Kelley