Trefethen Family Vineyards
2010 Dragon's Tooth Napa Valley Red Wine
California: Oak Knoll District (Napa)
There be dragons!
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Today’s spectacular 2010 Trefethen Family Vineyards Dragon’s Tooth Red Blend is a very structured and bold wine with intriguing flavors, deep aromatics and a mouth-filling exuberance that reflects the name of the wine.
This big, delicious blend of 58% Malbec, 22% Cabernet Sauvignon and 20% Petit Verdot is best enjoyed after some decanting or hearty swirling. As the wine breathes, it begins to take on added dimension, revealing more delicious fruit than was found on opening.
Enjoy now, but please be sure to get enough to lay a few bottles down - for the next decade or longer. This built-to-age wine will only continue to get even better.
Slightly opaque and dark violet at the core.
Exotic and bold with dark fruit that intermingles with a rustic backwoods aroma. Licorice, violet, baking spice, molasses, blackberry and black currant reduction round out the aromas.
Dark and rustic, with bold black fruit, black tea, geranium, dried black cherry, dried blueberry, tobacco, and leather, with hints of dried mission fig, black pepper and slate.
Balanced and very structured with flavors that tail off very gradually as the bold, structured tannins in the wine dissipate. Toasty oak and toasty vanilla persist.
The wine begs to be paired with something big. We’ll be enjoying ours with a perfectly seared New York steak with green peppercorn.
What the Winery Says
THE RED DRAGON on the label of our Dragon’s Tooth Napa Valley Red Wine originated in ancient British legend where two dragons—one red, one white—fight in the sky. The boy Merlin watches them with King Vortigern and when the red prevails, driving the white across the sea, the boy foretells the coming of King Arthur who will lead Vortigern’s people, the Welsh, to victory over the invading Saxons.
CATHERINE TREFETHEN, our First Lady, was Welsh. Her loves for wine, gardens and family were the inspiration for our estate in Napa Valley’s Oak Knoll District, and though she has departed, her spirit is still felt, especially in the cool foggy mornings when mist envelops the vineyard and our minds tend towards whimsical imaginings.
HIGHLIGHTING our new plantings of Malbec and Petit Verdot, this 100% Estate wine is born in the rockiest part of our vineyard where obsidian flakes occasionally remind us of the toothy smile of Y Ddraig Goch (The Red Dragon) guardian and symbol of Wales.
THE VINTAGE The vines got off to a slow start as April and May were both cooler and wetter than average. The cool trend continued into the mild summer and a full growing season that was our coolest since 1978. The exception was one notable heat spell in late August, when temperatures soared to over 111° F! Fortunately, September and October brought enough warm days to provide a beautiful finish to the growing season, allowing us to complete harvest a full week earlier than in 2009.
THE WINE This unique blend shines with vibrant aromas of boysenberry, cassis and baking spice. Nutmeg and toasty oak flavors segue into a long, chocolate-y finish that would disarm the fiercest of dragons. Malbec brings a diversity of fruit to the palate along with vibrant color; Petit Verdot contributes tannin; and Cabernet Sauvignon lends darker fruit and structure.
FOOD AFFINITIES Grilled steak, roasted lamb or duck breast are our favorite pairs with Dragon’s Tooth. The wine also shines with dark fruit reduction sauces.
ACCOLADES 93 POINTS (v. 2009) Wine Enthusiast March 2013
94 POINTS (v. 2008) Wine Enthusiast
90 POINTS (v. 2007) Robert Parker, Wine Advocate
About the Winery
It was never clear how this adventure was going to turn out. In the late 60’s when my family started to grow wine grapes in Napa Valley, there was no one to show them the way. There was plenty of advice, to be sure, but in truth no one had started a successful Napa vineyard since Prohibition. They were, in a word, crazy.
Their lunacy was infectious, however, and a few other enterprising souls joined the gambit: Tony Baldini, our first viticulturist; David Whitehouse, our first “real” winemaker; Richard DeGarmo, Mr. fix-it; Mary Ware, queen of the office and everyone’s schedule. I grew up with them and consider them all family. A shared passion brought them to us, and my parents received them with open arms. They settled into their respective posts, not as hired hands, but as equals in a shared endeavor. As I settle into my own role in the family business, I find this remarkable dynamic preserved and count myself blessed to spend my days working with old and new friends that quickly feel like family.
The land focuses our energies, as it always has, challenging us to understand its soils, the vines that grow in them, and the way fog drifts through the rows in the morning. It is an eternal learning process – each question answered reveals another be asked – but it’s a journey we love to take with each and every vintage. It also defines us and the wines we make, providing the vital essence of every bottle that bears our name. Decisions made in the vineyard and cellar not only guide the expression of the land, but affect the very soul of the wine. For this reason, we have always committed ourselves to estate production, adamant that we should be the ones growing the grapes and turning them into wine. Our passion requires it.
One Family. One Estate. One Passion. This is who we are.