Smith-Madrone Vineyards & Winery in the Spotlight

10:29 am Napa, Tasting Notes

Tasting recent vintages of Smith-Madrone wines reconfirms the depth and intensity displayed in wines made from fruit cultivated in higher altitude vineyards.  The elevation range of their steeply sloped site is 1,300 to 2,000 feet.  Here are my impressions of the wines the Smith brothers, Founder/Winegrower Stuart Smith and Winemaker/Winegrower Charles F. Smith III, are accomplishing in Napa Valley’s Spring Mountain District AVA. 

2018 Riesling ($36):  Scents of wet stone and citrus blossom rise from the glass at first swirl.  On the palate are layers of succulent peaches and nectarines, fresh squeezed lime, crisp apples, minerality, and faint lemon verbena exhilarating the palate.   Brisk acidity keeps it in fine balance, and a twist of lime lingers on the gratifying energetic finish. 

2018 Chardonnay ($45):  This beautifully complex Chardonnay opens with aromas of honeysuckle and butterscotch.  Expansive on the palate with a heavenly texture, as flavors of fresh pineapple, Granny Smith apple, Lemon Drop melon, spice cake, and a suggestion of toast reach every nook and cranny in the mouth. Brilliantly balanced and pure, and the lip-smacking finish is persistent.  

2019 Cabernet Sauvignon ($65):  The compelling aroma will keep you lingering over the glass, and the palate fully delivers what the aroma promises.  Flavors of dark berries, freshly turned earth, black currants, olive tapenade, blueberry coulis, and underlying oak marry deliciously.  Tannins are firm, the texture is velvety, and savory notes add depth through the long, memorable finish.  Approachable now, yet ageworthy if you have the patience to wait!   

2018 Cabernet Sauvignon (check with the winery if available):  The expressive aromatic drives you into the glass.  Deep and rich with a gorgeous texture and supple, well-integrated tannins.  Black plums, blackberries, sweet tobacco, crème de cassis, and graphite flow seamlessly across the palate.  Pleasing barrel spice sits nicely in the background adding further dimension. Intensely built while elegant, with years of enjoyment ahead.     

Visits to Smith-Madrone Vineyards & Winery can be scheduled for Tuesday, Thursday or Saturday at 10:00 am.  Visits/tastings are by reservation only; you can book online at

Leave a Comment

Your Comment

You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Please note: Comment moderation is enabled and may delay your comment. There is no need to resubmit your comment.