Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Black Stallion Winery

Black Stallion Winery is one of the newer wineries in Napa Valley, opening in 2007. It is just north of the town of  Napa on Silverado Trail. At the time of our visit they were open to the public, without an appointment, from 10 AM to 5 PM and offered five different tasting options from $10 to $20.  The tasting fee was waived if you purchase three bottles of wine. There was a 10% discount for a six bottle purchase and a 15% discount for a  twelve bottle purchase. They have a wine club that offers discounts.  Individual wines retailed from $22 to $150, with most of them in the $20 to $30 range, making them very reasonable by Napa Valley standards.

The first release of Black Stallion wines was in 2002 prior to their owning a physical winery.  Their first tasting room opened in 2007 at a 32 acre estate in the Oak Knoll District at what was up until 1990 an equestrian center known as the Silverado Horsemen's Center.  Their reserve wine is named Bucephalus in honor of the black horse Alexander the Great rode.  In 2010 Black Stallion was purchased by the Indelicato family, a family that had been in the wine industry for over 85 years.  Current production is around 4,000 cases per year and comes from grapes sourced from other vineyards, mostly from Napa Valley.  All of their wines are sold at the winery or online.  

Tasting options ranged from the Sampler Tasting at only $10 to the reserve Bucephalus Tasting at $20. They also offered a Just Red Tasting for $15, an All White Tasting for $12 and a Mixed Tasting for $12.  We opted to taste the "Just Red Tasting" .  It included the Black Stallion 2008 Merlot ($38), Black Stallion 2009 Syrah ($38), Black Stallion 2009 BSEW Cabernet Sauvignon ($25) and Black Stallion 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon (regularly $65, on sale for $50).  Our favorite was the 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon.  It was 88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Cabernet Franc and 4% Merlot. It began with a nice blackberry aroma.  On the palate I got blackberry and chocolate with  with soft tannins, good balance and a medium plus length finish.  Although we didn't try them, we were curious about their premium Bucephalus wines which sell for $150.  For $20, you may taste the 2005, 2006 and 2007 Bucephalus flight. 

The tasting room is quite pleasant, with the winery itself being in a lovely setting.  Service was good. This is a winery that will be interesting to watch as they grow and develop, although it is certainly worth visiting now, especially given their very reasonable prices.

Black Stallion Winery
4089 Silverado Trl
Napa, CA 94558
(888) 279-6272
Date of visit: November 30, 2011

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