Sill Family’s 2015 Atlas Peak Estate très Cabernet Sauvignon received the coveted DOUBLE gold medal award, and USA Wine of the Year at the 2018 CWSA Hong Kong International Wine Competition.
The annual event showcases the finest worldwide vintages and is widely considered to be one of the most prestigious wine competitions in the world, with 100 judges blind tasting wines. This year, 4,600 wines were received from over 900 producers in 55 wine-producing countries, making it one of the most influential wine awards in the world.
The crafting, processing and production is handled by winemaker, Igor Sill of Sill Family Vineyards, Atlas Peak Mountain Winery.
Napa is well known around the world for its exceptional wines, and the appellation which he believes surpasses all others is Napa’s famed Atlas Peak mountain region.
“It’s the high-elevation terroir and ultra-high-quality grapes that lend these boutique vineyards and wineries their magic and mystique. Even though it’s just minutes from the hustle and bustle of tourist-rich Napa Valley, it remains a completely different world.” Says Winemaker Sill.
Only 3% of the wine grapes grown in California are grown at elevations above 1,000 feet (300 m). It is widely known that the most costly and exceptional wines tend to come from these high-elevation mountain vineyards, where the terroir provides a mystical and divine setting.
Renowned Bordeaux-based oenologist Michel Rolland said, ‘These mountain grapes are far more difficult to farm and the growing season tends to be considerably longer. It’s much more difficult to plant, more difficult to establish the vines and they produce far lower yields. However, the end result is a grape expressing intensity of stellar quality as difficult growing conditions often lead to extraordinary wines.”
Sill Family Vineyard’s très wines have received numerous awards and rave reviews from Master Sommeliers, Wine Editors, Wine Critics, Wine Aficionados, Chefs and wine lovers, noting comments such as “a true revelation,” “absolutely exceptional,” “discernibly distinctive”
The mountains are more exposed to prevailing winds, adding more stress to the vines. Essentially, higher-elevation mountain vineyards benefit in several ways over valley-floor vines. They receive more concentrated sunlight, greater temperature variation and far better drainage, which creates a natural stress to the vines as they struggle to develop greater pigment concentration. As a result, they produce more intense aromas, flavors, colors and tannins, evolving more slowly and ageing much more gracefully.
Mountain wines tend to be produced in small quantities, hence the reason that many of Napa’s expensive ‘cult’ wines are from high elevations. Making things difficult for the vine, by withholding fertilizers, making nutrients scarce, pruning it hard and crowding it with competing vine neighbors can take the wine to another level.
Sill Family Vineyards offers its limited production, hand crafted wines through its website at www.sillfamilyvineyards.com and presently does not offer public tastings.