Arkenstone Vineyards

2009 Cabernet Sauvignon
Howell Mountain

2011 Offering
Premiere Napa Valley
Auction 15 | Lot No. 73


Arkenstone Vineyards


Cabernet Sauvignon
Howell Mountain

5 cases produced

Each vintage up at Arkenstone, we bring in our separate estate blocks of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, Merlot and Malbec during harvest, and ferment and age them separately for a year. Then we create our optimum vintage blend. However, at blending time, we find that our components are pretty stunning by themselves and we often think, “Wow, this component is awesome! What if we blended it with a bit more of this or a bit less of that?” Well, for Premiere Napa Valley we get our chance to do just that! This year our Cabernet Franc was our vintage “wow!” so we decided to do a Right Bank, Cabernet Franc-forward blend. This 2009 PNV blend is quite different from our proprietary Cabernet blend (Obsidian), but elegant, well structured and a lot of fun in its own way.

Aging Process


Wine Facts

  • Organically produced (also commonly called "organically grown")
  • Wine is 100% estate grown and bottled

Sam Kaplan

Winemaker, Arkenstone Vineyards

Winemaker, Sam Kaplan

You will hear winemakers say that paying attention to detail is critical, but Sam Kaplan, Arkenstone's Winemaker, takes it to another level. In the caves at Arkenstone, he has the luxury to do just that.

After graduating from Lewis and Clark College in Portland, Oregon, Sam was offered an internship at Pine Ridge Winery in 1998 for his first vintage. He then met the de Leuze family at ZD and worked his way from a cellar worker to the cellarmaster position. Shortly thereafter he was promoted to Assistant Winemaker, where he worked for nearly seven years learning not only winemaking and grape growing, but established a solid understanding in sales. In 2006, Sam met Ron and Susan Krausz and was offered the opportunity to help create their dream --a new winery called Arkenstone up on a spectacular shoulder property of Howell Mountain.

As Winemaker and overseer of the vineyards, Sam maintains the integrity and quality of Arkenstone wine. The depth, complexity, and balance of the wines are evidence of the tremendous breadth of his abilities. Passionate about organic farming, he loves spending time walking the vineyards with the crews, taking note of the tiniest details that ultimately shape each vintage.

The maxim that Sam lives by: Make the best damn wine possible and have fun doing it.

Country born: United States

Education: BA, Lewis and Clark
Enology coarsework at UC Davis and Napa Valley College

Years in the wine industry: 15-20 years

Winemaking Philosophy:
My goal is to highlight the specific vineyards and bring balance and focus to the wines. I make wines that are approachable upon release, yet are very age worthy.


1532 E Street
Napa  CA  94559


Premiere Napa Valley Wine Collection

Winery Vintage Variety Appellation Fanciful Auction
Checkerboard Vineyards 2010 Red Wine Napa Valley Bear Hollow 16
TEXTBOOK 2010 Red Wine Oakville OMG it's good (but don't tell anyone it's Merlot) 16
Arkenstone Vineyards 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain Estate 15
Davies Vineyards 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon Diamond Mountain District Jack's Block 15
Levy and McClellan 2009 Cabernet Franc Napa Valley 15
Jones Family Vineyards 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley 14
Judd's Hill 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley Friends at Harvest / Lot 15 14
Krupp Brothers 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley Two Bald Heads Cuvee 14
O'Brien Estate 2008 Cabernet Franc Oak Knoll District of Napa Valley 14
Sterling Vineyards 2008 Cabernet Franc Napa Valley Three Palms Vineyard 14
CONSTANT 2007 Cabernet Franc Diamond Mountain District 13
Diamond Terrace 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley Two Mountains 13
Laird Family Estate 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon Yountville 13
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