Dakota Shy was founded in 2008 by Todd Newman, who had worked in fine dining and at Revana Family Vineyard. But he wanted to create a luxury wine estate, so he teamed up with his friend Tom Garret, a winemaker and Napa Valley native whose winemaking experience included stints at Turley Wine Cellars, Joseph Phelps Winery, Robert Mondavi and Revana. Dakota Shy has an estate at the base of Pritchard Hill, but it also sources grapes from all over Napa Valley. The estate makes Cabernet Sauvignon, Sauvignon Blanc and a rosé. The wines have earned ratings in the mid-90s from reviewers. Vinous has noted that the estate’s flagship wines “are contemporary Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignons that offer a compelling interplay of richness and structure, with perhaps a slight leaning toward the more extroverted end of the spectrum.”
Oakville AVA is one of the two or three most prestigious appellations in the United States. Located in the heart of Napa Valley, its 5,000 vineyard acres produce some of the world’s most acclaimed Cabernet Sauvignon, including such California “cult” Cabs as Screaming Eagle and Harlan Estate. Before those boutique producers rose to fame in the 1990s, Oakville was already renowned as home to Robert Mondavi, Opus One and Groth Vineyards, among others. Along with the famous wineries, there are premier vineyards in this AVA, including Martha’s Vineyard and To Kalon Vineyard. To Kalon was first planted in 1868 by H.W. Crabb, one of California’s first viticultural researchers, and he named the vineyard after the ancient Greek phrase for “most beautiful.” Though many grapes can be successfully grown in Oakville, Cabernet Sauvignon is king. Merlot and Chardonnay are also frequently planted. Oakville Cabs are prized for their richness, complexity and weight. Oakville was designated as an AVA in 1993.
This is a parent grape to Cabernet Sauvignon. It most likely originates from Basque country. It is an excellent blending grape, known for making the exquisite Cheval-Blanc. Franc is a little hardier on a vine than Sauvignon, but drinks smoothly at the table.