Chappellet Pritchard Hill Release Party

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Gabe Berk
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Chappellet Pritchard Hill Release Party

#1 Post by Gabe Berk » September 30th, 2019, 2:17 pm

IMG-8671.jpg
The Chappellet family are some of the most genuine, down to earth, humble and appreciative people in the wine world that I have come across. The winery is still owned and operated by the family who now have 3 generations working for them in some capacity. They threw a spread for their annual Pritchard Hill Cabernet release. Zero pretentiousness or showiness that has otherwise become accustom with a lot of higher end wineries in Napa. It was held on their property's meadow and included some incredible snacks and 4 vinatges of the Pritchard Hill Cabernet, including the soon to be released 2016. Some other wines were being poured as well. Majority of the family was there including the vineyard manager, wine maker, marketing team and hospitality team. Everyone of them was so gracious and took time to give thanks and talk to everyone 1 on 1. After years of purchasing Napa Cabernets in the same price range and quality, the Pritchard Hill Cabernet is the only one I still fork over that cash for. One is the wine is world class and the other is it's so easy to support people who genuinely appreciate the business. [cheers.gif]

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Re: Chappellet Pritchard Hill Release Party

#2 Post by Chris Atkins » September 30th, 2019, 6:29 pm

I used to be buyer until the pricing got out of control. I recall paying just under $100 for the 2001-2004. Where are they now?

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David Baum
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Re: Chappellet Pritchard Hill Release Party

#3 Post by David Baum » September 30th, 2019, 7:23 pm

You recall incorrectly. It was $125 back then and like every other wine and product inflation over 15 years later has doubled the price. 2015 release price was $235and it's a 100 PT wine more often than not. Very fair and consistent as compared with most of the new high end cabs out of Napa made from one of the brand name vineyards by a brand name consulting winemaker.

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Re: Chappellet Pritchard Hill Release Party

#4 Post by Chris Atkins » September 30th, 2019, 11:52 pm

Actually I didn't recall incorrectly, as I was offered a 30% industry discount! The 2001 was spectacular on nearly every occasion. Over the past decade its become too big and ripe for my liking and if now at $235, that only solidifies my decision to stop buying.

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Re: Chappellet Pritchard Hill Release Party

#5 Post by David Baum » October 1st, 2019, 12:17 am

Interesting, we stop by everytime we visit Napa and I go with my friend that's ItB. He gets 30% off most everything though never the Pritchard Hill which they have never discounted at least not in the last 10 years I've been going there with him.

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Re: Chappellet Pritchard Hill Release Party

#6 Post by Brandon R » October 1st, 2019, 7:56 am

Great post, Gabe. Thanks for putting it out there. That sounds like a perfect release party indeed.
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Re: Chappellet Pritchard Hill Release Party

#7 Post by Jeff_M. » October 1st, 2019, 8:13 am

I was also there on Saturday. Had a great time talking to the Chappellet's and am grateful I was able to attend. They poured the 06', 11', 14 and 16' Pritchard Hills out of 750s. They had a 3L of the 06' an 14' they were pouring as they mingled with guests. I really enjoy when I get to have conversations with the wine maker (Phil Titus) and talk about everything they are working on as well as the vineyard manager (think his name was Dave).

The 06' is starting to get into a good spot but has a long way to go.

The 11' is also starting to get into a good spot.

The fruit on the 14' was amazing. This is still very young but definitely good if you like your cabs on the younger side.

The 16' is too young for me just yet but it is great to taste the promise of a 100 point release.

They poured 17' Grower Collection Chardonnay, Sangiacomo Vineyard and 17' Grower Collection Viognier, Cold Creek Vineyard. My guest with me took some of this home.

Wish they had some of the new Hideaway Vineyard to taste but can't and won't ever complain when they were pouring 4 vintages of Pritchard Hill for us for 3 hours.
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Re: Chappellet Pritchard Hill Release Party

#8 Post by MitchTallan » October 1st, 2019, 9:47 am

David Baum wrote:
September 30th, 2019, 7:23 pm
You recall incorrectly. It was $125 back then and like every other wine and product inflation over 15 years later has doubled the price. 2015 release price was $235and it's a 100 PT wine more often than not. Very fair and consistent as compared with most of the new high end cabs out of Napa made from one of the brand name vineyards by a brand name consulting winemaker.
I am simply curious (and don't mean to challenge you) but when you say it is a "100 PT wine", who are you referring to as the source of the 100 pt score?
What in your mind does that mean? Does that mean it's a perfect wine or just better than most and as good as any California Cab?
Again, I am being as earnest as can be.
I am not inquiring completely from the sidelines, just partially.
I used to buy Chappellet quite a bit in the 70's. I have great memories of the '75. I visited there in '86 or so. The '01, IIRC, was the first to get the huge could-club-a-seal-with-it bottle and became something of a cult item that started the price escalation. The story goes that Don Chappellet had priced the '01 similarly to previous bottlings and a neighboring vintner told him he had something very special that should be priced at over $100 which Don was uncomfortable with. The first wave of the '01 was released to retailers at Ohio MSRP of $60 and then a second wave of the very same bottle came in at over $100. This caused me and Mike DiSalvo of this Board to do our best to acquire bottles from the first wave. I still have two of the '01 in my cellar (I think) but my cellar is very unorganized and I have never succeeded in finding them. Just like two '01 Chateau Lafite I have never been able to find but I digress. About 2008 or so a friend popped the '01 Chappellet for a dinner. It was undrinkable in both of our opinions. Perhaps it just needed more time but all we got out of it was subdued fruit and a lot of alcohol.

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Re: Chappellet Pritchard Hill Release Party

#9 Post by Brandon R » October 1st, 2019, 9:56 am

Jeff_M. wrote:
October 1st, 2019, 8:13 am
I was also there on Saturday. Had a great time talking to the Chappellet's and am grateful I was able to attend. They poured the 06', 11', 14 and 16' Pritchard Hills out of 750s. They had a 3L of the 06' an 14' they were pouring as they mingled with guests. I really enjoy when I get to have conversations with the wine maker (Phil Titus) and talk about everything they are working on as well as the vineyard manager (think his name was Dave).

The 06' is starting to get into a good spot but has a long way to go.

The 11' is also starting to get into a good spot.

The fruit on the 14' was amazing. This is still very young but definitely good if you like your cabs on the younger side.

The 16' is too young for me just yet but it is great to taste the promise of a 100 point release.

They poured 17' Grower Collection Chardonnay, Sangiacomo Vineyard and 17' Grower Collection Viognier, Cold Creek Vineyard. My guest with me took some of this home.

Wish they had some of the new Hideaway Vineyard to taste but can't and won't ever complain when they were pouring 4 vintages of Pritchard Hill for us for 3 hours.
Cold Creek Vineyard, as in Washington State? If so, that's pretty cool!
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Gabe Berk
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Re: Chappellet Pritchard Hill Release Party

#10 Post by Gabe Berk » October 1st, 2019, 10:26 am

@Brandon R, the Viognier was from the Cold Creek Vineyard in Carneros. It went well with the oysters on the half shell and caviar you could spoon on top. The chefs highly encouraged to see how much caviar we could get on an oyster. I hung out at that station for a good ten minutes!!!

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Re: Chappellet Pritchard Hill Release Party

#11 Post by Jeff_M. » October 1st, 2019, 10:33 am

Brandon R wrote:
October 1st, 2019, 9:56 am
Jeff_M. wrote:
October 1st, 2019, 8:13 am
I was also there on Saturday. Had a great time talking to the Chappellet's and am grateful I was able to attend. They poured the 06', 11', 14 and 16' Pritchard Hills out of 750s. They had a 3L of the 06' an 14' they were pouring as they mingled with guests. I really enjoy when I get to have conversations with the wine maker (Phil Titus) and talk about everything they are working on as well as the vineyard manager (think his name was Dave).

The 06' is starting to get into a good spot but has a long way to go.

The 11' is also starting to get into a good spot.

The fruit on the 14' was amazing. This is still very young but definitely good if you like your cabs on the younger side.

The 16' is too young for me just yet but it is great to taste the promise of a 100 point release.

They poured 17' Grower Collection Chardonnay, Sangiacomo Vineyard and 17' Grower Collection Viognier, Cold Creek Vineyard. My guest with me took some of this home.

Wish they had some of the new Hideaway Vineyard to taste but can't and won't ever complain when they were pouring 4 vintages of Pritchard Hill for us for 3 hours.
Cold Creek Vineyard, as in Washington State? If so, that's pretty cool!
https://www.chappellet.com/assets/image ... neyard.pdf
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Re: Chappellet Pritchard Hill Release Party

#12 Post by Jeff_M. » October 1st, 2019, 10:33 am

Gabe Berk wrote:
October 1st, 2019, 10:26 am
@Brandon R, the Viognier was from the Cold Creek Vineyard in Carneros. It went well with the oysters on the half shell and caviar you could spoon on top. The chefs highly encouraged to see how much caviar we could get on an oyster. I hung out at that station for a good ten minutes!!!
Ditto to that. I think I went back for 6 rounds at the oyster and caviar table.
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2007 Yangarra Estate High Sands Grenache
1986 Spottswoode Cabernet

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Re: Chappellet Pritchard Hill Release Party

#13 Post by David Baum » October 1st, 2019, 12:08 pm

Mitch
A 100 point wine means it's been deemed well made and exceptional by someone with a well above average palate that tastes wine for a living. It means it is among the top tier of wines made in a given year. Perfection and taste is so subjective and in the eyes of the beholder.

In this case it was JD. I consider scores that high from him, AG, WA and WS as reliable barometers subject to individual differences in tastes. The rest are meaningless to me

Good job on grabbing onto the 01s and holding onto them. I hope they show well for you when you get around to drinking them.

For me their regular Signature cab is one of the best deals out of Napa. Always very good and often exceptional particularly at that price level which I'm able to enjoy 30% off through my friend itb. Unlike the PH it can be a very good early drinker.

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Re: Chappellet Pritchard Hill Release Party

#14 Post by Ken Strauss » October 1st, 2019, 12:50 pm

I am a big fan of Chappellet.
I wish I lived a little closer and be able to attend the release party. Sounds like a lot of fun!
My 6 pack was charged today for $1,260.00 which included cold pack fed-ex shipping.
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Re: Chappellet Pritchard Hill Release Party

#15 Post by Ian S » October 1st, 2019, 3:46 pm

FYI: the 2012 Pritchard Hill was $150 a bottle, and a purchase of 3 included the OWC.
David Baum wrote:
October 1st, 2019, 12:08 pm
A 100 point wine....

In this case it was JD.
Jeb Dunnuck? He's getting as bad as James Suckling with the high scores lately. It's like he gets a bonus for every 99 and a double bonus for every 100 he gives to 2016 Napa Cabs.
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Re: Chappellet Pritchard Hill Release Party

#16 Post by David Baum » October 1st, 2019, 4:17 pm

While I agree he tends to be a point or two higher he's consistent and doesn't regularly score mediocre wines 94+ like JS. A JS 100 carries no credibility among most winos. A JD 100 while it doesn't carry the same weight as say an AG or WA is a well made top tier wine.

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Re: Chappellet Pritchard Hill Release Party

#17 Post by Gabe Berk » October 2nd, 2019, 11:14 am

Looks like Wine Advocate also gave the 2016 a 100 pointer too...

Rating
100

Release Price
$235

Drink Date
2021 - 2054

Reviewed by
Lisa Perrotti-Brown

The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Pritchard Hill has a very deep garnet-purple color. To smell the nose is like hearing angels trumpeting at the pearly gates! The most incredible and evocative scents come spilling out of the glass, conjuring notions of freshly crushed black raspberries, wild blueberries, red and black currant compote and raspberry leaves with subtler hints of roses, violets, tilled soil, cigar box and fragrant earth. Medium to full-bodied and achingly graceful in the mouth, the perfumed black and red fruits seemingly dance on the palate with a very firm yet beautifully fine-grained texture and just the right amount of freshness, finishing with epic persistence. Hallelujah—this is perfection!!

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Re: Chappellet Pritchard Hill Release Party

#18 Post by MitchTallan » October 2nd, 2019, 11:45 am

Reviewed by
Lisa Perrotti-Brown

The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Pritchard Hill has a very deep garnet-purple color. To smell the nose is like hearing angels trumpeting at the pearly gates! The most incredible and evocative scents come spilling out of the glass, conjuring notions of freshly crushed black raspberries, wild blueberries, red and black currant compote and raspberry leaves with subtler hints of roses, violets, tilled soil, cigar box and fragrant earth. Medium to full-bodied and achingly graceful in the mouth, the perfumed black and red fruits seemingly dance on the palate with a very firm yet beautifully fine-grained texture and just the right amount of freshness, finishing with epic persistence. Hallelujah—this is perfection!!
It's been a while since I've been to Sunday School but I think LP-B has the trumpets and the fall of Jericho mixed up metaphorically with the "Pearly Gates".
Equating the smell of wine to hearing some biblical event is new one on me too.
"Scents come spilling out of the glass?" How do smells "spill"?
And how is "tilled soil" different from "fragrant earth" when separated only by the words "cigar box"?
I suppose her momma and daddy would prefer she wax religious than equate the experience to an orgasm.
I used to like Chappellet. I don't like the wine now (I think), and I won't spend $235 to see if what I last tasted holds true today.
But I really hate perfect scores, scores in general, and hyperbolic wine descriptions.

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