The 2012 Hayfork Lewelling Ranch Cabernet, which is actually a great value in the scheme of Napa pricing, is a blend of 94% Cabernet Sauvignon and 6% Petit Verdot that was aged for 20 months in 70% new French oak. The wine displays gorgeous licorice, lead pencil shavings, black currants, loamy soil undertones and a touch of barrique. Dense purple, it has a full-bodied, multi-layered mouthfeel and a stunning finish with good acidity and velvety, well-integrated tannin, alcohol and wood. This is a scrumptious, full-throttle Cabernet Sauvignon to drink over the next 15 or so years.
The 2012 Hayfork Field Select is slightly more expensive and a much smaller cuvée of just two barrels compared to the 610 cases of the Lewelling Ranch. It is a flowery wine, with notes of licorice, chocolate, coffee bean, blackcurrants and new oak. The wine comes from their favorite block on Lewelling Ranch and is a blend of 98% Cabernet Sauvignon and 2% Petit Verdot. I didn’t like it as much as the 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon Lewelling Ranch, as it is more backward, more flowery, and just seems more structured, although potentially longer lived. Give it 4-5 years of cellaring and drink it over the following 25 years.