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2014 Dana Estates Cabernet Sauvignon Helms Vineyard

Cabernet Sauvignon

  • USA
  • California
  • Napa Valley
  • Rutherford
Drink between 2019 - 2038 (Edit)
CT94 5 reviews
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Community Tasting Notes 4

  • msuwine wrote: 95 points

    August 10, 2020 - This ripe and earthy 100% Cabernet is drinking beautifully right now, with an incredible depth of fruit and savory undertone that make for an incredible wine. Dark purple in color; full in body; pungent nose of boysenberry, cardamon, bay leaf, and menthol. Flavors of crushed blueberry, crushed gravel (a/k/a trail dust), grilled pepper, tapenade, and cocoa powder, with a layered and lingering finish. 15.2% alcohol. This doesn't quite have the depth of the 2012, but it's remarkable all the same. 95+ at the moment, with upside over the next 3-7 years.

  • KenK Likes this wine: 91 points

    July 12, 2020 - J Chan owner & Chris Comey winemaker talk with Antonio Galloni...
    His wife’s family represented Napa in Korea. Goal is site specific wines like Burgundy. Look for best sites in top appellations. John Shafer helped them a lot looking for vineyards. Livingston-Moffet in Rutherford. Hershey - Howell Mtn. 80% planted from scratch there & bio dynamic & dry farm. Crystal Springs-Lotus - high elevation vineyards. Sits below Howell Mtn. 1200 feet. & above Calistoga. It’s own niche, sits on a perch. Hand farm because so steep. Lotus - Planted on rock pile.
    Crystal Springs not Rocky.

    Helms-1883 first planted, organic since 2008, property purchased 2005 by Dana.

    3 winemaking areas for each vineyard wine to keep them individual.

    Helms is Softer, elegant benchland, soil here is cobble & red soil gives it violet floral notes & blackberry & a cocoa powder flavor called Rutherford dust.

    This wine...Nice sweet aromatic edge, showing bright plum, & cherries with hints of blackberries. Tense firm loamy purple flavors. A touch lean & chewy.

  • Cailles wrote: 94 points

    June 17, 2019 - Dana Estates 2013-2016: Once-in-a-lifetime tasting with winemaker Chris Cooney. We tasted the past 4 vintages (2013- 2016) of all their wines. Conclusions: 1) Incredibly high level: 93 as lowest score, many 95/96s and one 98 point wine (I rarely go so high in such broad tastings where you can't follow the wine over 5h). 2) Main reasons: weightless structure (not many Napa wines achieve that level), very elegant, high aromatic intensity, complexity and precision, perfect ripeness. 3) "Entry-level" wines (Vaso - great in 13/16, Onda - always a bit too fat) are very good but do not have the length or elegance (Onda) of the big 3, which each have a distinctive profile: Helms is probably the most purely perfumed (but overall a tad behind the others), Lotus is the most hedonistic and dense wine, Hershey the most complex, intellectual wine. 4) Wine of the Night? Probably the Lotus 2014. But others might likely surpass it one day (Hershey 13/16, Lotus 16). The 3 big wines got a 2-4 hour decant (which did good), all others PnPed.

    TN: Dana’s Helms wines are marked by its pure fruit expression, are very perfumed. In terms of complexity and hedonistic pleasure a tad behind Lotus and Hershey in all vintages. All wines share, however, the very fine structure, the weightless frame hardly seen to that (consistent) degree in Napa Valley wines. No heavy bombs, no dense sweet wines. This vintage displayed a dense and sweet blackberries along with some red berries. The least expressive vineyard is coping less good than the other wines with the lightest vintage. Still a very good wine which will for sure crack the 95+ point category with further age. 94-95 points.

    1 person found this helpful Comment
  • sirpat00 wrote: 94 points

    June 13, 2019 - Dana estate vertical and horizontal 2013-16 (Restaurant Löwen, Meilen): Dana Estates vertical / horizontal – I am trying to coin "vertizontal" – with 22 wines in Zurich. The line-up included all vintages 2013-16 for all estates (including Vaso) and two vintages of the Sauvignon Blanc. The consistency I encountered here was amazing. Powerful yet elegant and light on the palate is a description that worked for almost all vintages and estates (including the Vaso). Of these vintages the 2016 stood out as exceptional, but I was also quite fond of the (controversial) 2013. In terms of estates Lotus and Hershey are playing in a league of their own. The "budget" Vaso is punching on par with Onda and Helms and hence offers great value for money. See the tasting story for more background and winemaker comments.

    Tasting note:
    Intense fruit on both the nose and the palate. Maybe more red than dark. Some graphite. Aromatics a bit more narrow than for the other vineyards of the vintage.

Pro Reviews 5

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  • By Jeb Dunnuck
    North Coast Part 1: Napa Valley's Incredible 2016s, 1/31/2019 (link)

    (Dana Estates Cabernet Sauvignon Helms Vineyard Red) Subscribe to see review text.


  • By Antonio Galloni
    Brilliance in Napa Valley: 2016 & 2015 Cabernets (Jan 2018), 1/18/2018 (link)

    (Dana Cabernet Sauvignon Helms Vineyard Napa Valley Red) Subscribe to see review text.

  • By James Suckling
    1/26/2017 (link)

    (Dana Estates Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley Rutherford Helms Vineyard, United States) Subscribe to see review text.


  • By Antonio Galloni
    Napa Valley Trilogy: 2014, 2015 & 2016 (Dec 2016), 12/1/2016 (link)

    (Dana Cabernet Sauvignon Helms Vineyard Napa Valley) Subscribe to see review text.

  • By Antonio Galloni
    2013 Napa Valley: Once Upon a Time in America… (Oct 2015), 10/1/2015 (link)

    (Dana Cabernet Sauvignon Helms Vineyard Napa Valley) Subscribe to see review text.

Wine Definition

  • Vintage 2014
  • Type Red
  • Producer Dana Estates
  • Varietal Cabernet Sauvignon
  • Designation n/a
  • Vineyard Helms Vineyard
  • Country USA
  • Region California
  • SubRegion Napa Valley
  • Appellation Rutherford

Community Holdings

  • Pending Delivery 0 (0%)
  • In Cellars 423 (84%)
  • Consumed 81 (16%)

Food Pairing

No food pairings available.

Who Likes This Wine

100% Like It  2 votes

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