“…its riveting richness, concentration, texture and density represent another legend in the making.” 95-97+, Robert Parker, March 2016
Tim Martin, legendary marketer of ultra-luxury goods and brands, established his wine bona fides with the creation of Tusk in 2008, in partnership with Philippe Melka . Following that arc, he took a vineyard planted in 1990 high in the Mayacamas Mountains of Sonoma County (right near Pride Mountain) formerly know as Hidden Ridge, and a comment by critic Robert Parker proclaiming one of the Hidden Ridge wines “nearly immortal”, and the Immortal brand was launched.
In its original incarnation, Hidden Ridge Vineyard was a small vineyard with a cult-like following. Its 2013 Impassable Mountain Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon received a coveted 100-point score from venerated wine critic Robert Parker, who described it as a “quintessential example of what perfection is.”
After working in Napa Valley for a decade with legendary Robin Lail and her wine project, Lail Vineyards, in addition to launching his own project, Tusk Estates, Martin launched Gauge Branding with partner Mark Wiegard. At Gauge, Martin focuses on cultivating brand DNA and crafting marketing strategies for emerging winemakers, cold-brew coffee makers, and bourbon distillers. In 2017, he fulfilled his lifelong dream to own a vineyard and thus became the new owner of Hidden Ridge Vineyard, now known as Immortal Estate.
To say the vineyard’s unique location is off the beaten path would be an understatement. Located on 150 acres of land on the Sonoma side of Spring Mountain in the Mayacamas Mountains, the secluded vineyard runs the ridge between the Napa and Sonoma valleys. West of St. Helena, the estate’s 50 planted acres span the slope of Spring Mountain. What makes the vineyard unique is its 55-degree slope, a deviation from the county’s set 15-degree maximum. Since the area was originally developed by Lynn Hofacket and Marco DiGiulio in 1990, the estate is grandfathered in.
The Slope represents the many aspects, elevations and exposures of this remarkable hillside vineyard. Individual lots from across the property were selected and blended to produce this August cuvée. The wine is dense, ripe and powerful, an effusive vortex of blackberry, toast, brown sugar, allspice, cassis, dark chocolate, earl grey tea, mint, anise, sugar cookie, chai, and tarragon. The palate is massive, but the fruit is sweet, supple and creamy. It is an experience that will bring you to the mountain, for there is no other place like it.
95-97+RP - As for the 2014s, the 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon Slope from the Hidden Ridge vineyard does not suffer in comparison with the extraordinary efforts of 2013. Still a barrel sample, its riveting richness, concentration, texture and density represent another legend in the making. Crème de cassis, licorice, blackberry, earthiness and spice are all present in this magnificent example of Cabernet Sauvignon that should age beautifully for 25-30+ years.