Martha’s Vineyard is one of the most famous in the United States., if not the wine world. Located in Oakville, the wines from this thirty-four acre parcel have come to define the excellence of Napa Cabernet. While many are familiar with the Heitz name, not as many may be aware of the special story behind Martha’s vineyard and the man responsible for these unique expressions of terroir, Tom May.
May and his wife bought their property in Napa in the early 1960’s. When they moved to town, they were gifted a bottle of Heitz wine by a friend, which put the winery on their radar. Joe Heitz, an already experienced winemaker prior to founding his namesake winery, was so impressed with May’s grapes upon trying them that he committed to something that at that time was a bold move - a single-vineyard label, named Martha’s Vineyard, after May’s wife. Martha’s became the first vineyard-designated wine in Napa Valley.
The firsts didn’t stop there. Tom May was incredibly pioneering; he was an environmentalist during a time when many were skeptics, he dry-farmed his vineyards (only turning to irrigation years later due to drought) and he was also one of the first in Napa to embrace organic farming practices. The two families have remained partners for over fifty years.
Despite the passing of both patriarchs, their partnership lives on. When Heitz was acquired in 2018, Martha’s vineyard was not included as part of the deal; the Heitz children continue to work with Martha and her children, turning the grapes from her vineyard into wine that is year in and year out regarded as a work of art.
The exclusive cabernet “Martha’s Clone” is known for producing small berries with an intensely purple hue, deeply concentrated flavor and a distinctive minty aroma. During aging, only the best barrels from the vineyard are selected and bottled as our Martha’s Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon. Spending a year in neutral oak tanks after fermentation, the wine is allowed to settle and refine itself. Next, it is barreled down to hand-selected, 100% new French Limousin oak wide-grain barrels, allowing a slow and gentle integration of the toast and vanilla characteristics from the barrel to marry with the wine. Three years later, Martha’s Vineyard Cabernet is ready to bottle whereupon it continues to mature gracefully for another full year before being released from the cellar. A wine full of balance and unique, almost mysterious qualities, Martha’s Vineyard is our flagship wine and a true Napa Valley icon.
Each case contains 2 of each wine:
Martha’s Vineyard 2009
93 Points, Vinous
The 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon Martha's Vineyard is a relatively immediate Martha’s, with a real feeling of mid-palate density and weight that is almost out of character for this estate. Sweet, silky tannins give the 2009 much of its succulence. Scents of mint, pine and eucalyptus wrap around the juicy, inviting finish.
Martha’s Vineyard 2010
95 Points, Decanter
One of Napa Valley's classics, Martha's Vineyard is a legendary site in west Oakville at the foot of the Mayacamas Mountains. Heitz's 2010 rendition opens up with fragrant black fruit, mint chocolate and rich soil tones, revealing supple, layered tannins and bright acidity on the palate. Like all the Heitz wines, this is unmistakably fresh and savoury.
Martha’s Vineyard 2012
96 Points, Wine Enthusiast
This tremendous 100% varietal wine hails from Oakville and was aged over three years in oak. Juicy red-cherry fruit and a compelling hint of caramel greet the palate, framed by elegant, fine tannins and a subtle minty tone in the background. Balanced and rewarding from start to finish, it has years ahead of it to develop further nuance. Enjoy 2022–2030.