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Jeb Dunnuck’s Review – Vintage 2016

August 6, 2019

2016 Carte Blanche Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley – 97 Points

A different beast, the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon (100% Cabernet Sauvignon) is more backward and reticent, and while it needs 4-5 years of bottle age, is packed with potential. Both black and blue fruits, earth, tobacco, and freshly crushed rock notes all flow to a full-bodied 2016 that has plenty of fine tannins, remarkable purity of fruit, and beautiful intensity and length. Do your best to give this some bottle age, and you’ll be rewarded with a phenomenal Napa Valley Cabernet that will keep for 2-3 decades.

2016 Carte Blanche Chardonnay, UV Vineyard, Sonoma Coast – 96 Points

From a great site on the Sonoma Coast, which is also known as the Laguna Vineyard, the 2016 Chardonnay UV Vineyard was barrel fermented and spent 16 months in 30% new French oak. This brilliant wine offers a medium gold color to go with rich, powerful notes of pineapple, crushed rocks, and brioche. It shows more and more minerality with time in the glass, has good acidity, and a concentrated, medium to full-bodied style that’s a joy to drink. It reminds me of a slightly Burgundian style Chardonnay from Mark Aubert.

2016 Carte Blanche Pinot Noir, Sun Chase Vineyard, Sonoma Coast – 95+ Points

As to the reds, the 2016 Pinot Noir Sun Chase Vineyard was mostly destemmed (there’s 30% stems) and spent 16 months in 40% new barrels. It’s another layered, rich, yet impeccably balanced wine and offers lots of red and black fruits, savory herbs, and earthy, forest floor-like nuances. Drink it over the coming decade or more.

2016 Carte Blanche Proprietary Red Wine, Napa Valley – 95 Points

Coming from Napa Valley, the 2016 Proprietary Red Wine is a blend of 46% Cabernet Sauvignon, 29% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, and the rest Petit Verdot, all aged in new barrels. This cuvée is made with the idea to be slightly more accessible and offers a St. Emilion-like feel in its blue fruits, tobacco leaf, crushed rocks, and cedary, spice-laced aromas and flavors. It’s full-bodied, has a layered, balanced texture, and terrific tannin quality. It’s another powerful yet elegant wine from Keplinger.

Antonio Gallonis review

September 12, 2016


Antonio Galloni’s review of our 2013 Proprietary Red Wine, Napa Valley
93 Points

Another racy, expressive wine from Carte Blanche, the 2013 Proprietary Red Wine is beautifully perfumed throughout. Dark red cherry, pomegranate, mint, spice and sweet floral notes are woven together in a sensual, supple wine that will drink well pretty much upon release. The blend of mostly Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc works quite well here.—Antonio Galloni

Gallery News

August 25, 2016

Thank you!

March 11, 2016

Thank you to syndicated wine columnist Kelly Hayes for his classy column featuring Carte Blanche Wine!
Click here to view column

Hot Off the Press!

February 29, 2016

We’re honored to have been reviewed in the Fermented Fruit and featured in the Palm Beach Daily News

2012 Red Scores

February 3, 2016

Vinous / Antonio Galloni  | 2012 Proprietary Red – 94 Points
A great example of the vintage at its best, the 2012 Proprietary Red Wine exudes richness and voluptuousness. A host of sweet red cherry, rose petal, mint and spices notes open up, with expressive aromatics that add a gorgeous top register. The positive reputation of the vintage is built on wines like this that offer tremendous radiance and near term appeal.

2012 Cabernet Sauvignon – 92 Points
Dark, powerful and intense, the 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon is laced with black cherry, plum, leather, smoke, licorice, tar, smoke and savory herbs. Plump and expressive, with a good range of textures and flavors, the 2012 is a delicious Cabernet to drink now and over the next decade.

Wine Spectator  | 2012 Proprietary Red – 93 Points
Herbal and cedary in a pleasant way, rich and full-bodied, with juicy blackberry, cherry, currant and loamy earth notes. The flavors fairly coat the palate, revealing uncommon depth and density. Very chewy on the finish. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. Best from 2017 through 2030.

Helen on the cover of Wine Spectator June 15, 2014

September 12, 2014

February 20, 2014

Rhone Style Red, Napa

Though 2010 was a challenging harvest year, more often than not, something hard earned can taste all the better. Such is the case with several California Rhone style wines, including our 2010 Bennett Valley Three Peaks Syrah, which just received 94 points in the March issue of Wine Spectator!

As noted by writer James Laube, “Though 2011 was the most problematic year in a decade for many producers, there are more bright spots than expected…In many ways, California Rhônes are at the cutting edge not only of grapegrowing and winemaking, but also of how Golden State producers market their wines.”





Robb Report

December 31, 2013

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Check out Robb Report’s “Season’s Sipping” article. Our Carte Blanche 2010 Chardonnay made the mag’s “Top 100 Outstanding Holiday Wines” list, as noted under the full-bodied whites. Cheers! (or Happy 2014!)  View article.

Wine Spectator – New & Noteworthy

November 18, 2013

Wine Spectator, Carte Blanche WineCheck out the recent Nov. 15 coverage on Nick in Wine Spectator, which states, “Few vintners grew up drinking classified-growth Bordeaux with dinner, but for Nicholas Allen it was a family tradition…Allen spent a decade in the real estate industry before turning to wine, launching his California label, Carte Blanche, in 2007… He leases the properties he sources, which gives him more flexibility when putting together the final blends.”



The September and October 2013 issues of Wine Spectator featured exciting reviews of our 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley  and the 2010 Pinot Noir Sonoma Coast Nobles Ranch Vineyard:

2010 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley ($125), 91 points, 400 cases
“This pure red delivers ripe plum and red berry fruit, offering notes of crushed rock, loamy dried herbs and cedar. Ends with chewy tannins, showing an impressive push of flavors on the finish. Drink now through 2023.”

2010 Pinot Noir Sonoma Coast Nobles Ranch Vineyard ($75), 93 points, 125 cases
“This red exhibits a stylish mix of ripe, rich cherry, raspberry, red candy and floral scents, turning creamy and layered. Ends with a long, persistent finish that echoes fruit and light oak. Drink now through 2022.”