Though not the year of the dragon, the latest release of Napa Valley’s Chappellet Malbec may conjure up dreams of the winged creatures.
Each year Carissa Chappellet creates an original dragon drawing for the winery’s “dragon wines.” This year her drawing adorns the 2019 estate-grown Malbec showcasing a whimsical flying dragon named Minty. Though Malbec isn’t often a focus in Napa, where Cabernet Sauvignon reigns supreme. However, the Bordeaux varieties thrive alongside its sister grapes, enhancing Bordeaux-style blends and standing solid on their own when bottled individually.
Chappellet’s Malbec is plush and juicy, revealing layers of ripe red berry, plum, and dark Morello cherry. With liveliness and energy, the wine balances chewy, grippy tannin with fresh bright acidity, creating balance and approachability for the wine upon release. Notes of toasted toffee, espresso, and dusty herbs linger on the soft, silky finish. A perfect wine to enjoy with grilled beef or sausages, or a slab of ribs and smoky burnt ends.