In 1975, Francis Ford Coppola purchased the old Inglenook property, intent to restore
the historic chateau, reunite the original vineyards, and create world-class red wines. The
Estate’s flagship wine is Rubicon—a proprietary blend of Cabernet, Merlot, Cabernet
Franc, and Petit Verdot, produced from the best selections of the Estate’s 235 contiguous
acres of certified-organic vineyards, including Clone #29 Cabernet Sauvignon.
This unique Cabernet clone defines the heart of the Rubicon blend. Designated and
certified by the University of California at Davis as a heritage clone, laboratory analysis
has confirmed that this selection has the same genetic material as the vines Gustave
Niebaum, Inglenook’s founder, brought back from France in the 1880s.
Warmer than average temperatures throughout spring and summer led to an early vintage in 2004. Additionally, the entire Estate experienced a lower yield of fruit – 18% less than in years prior. Even the grape clusters themselves weighed less. As a result, the Cabernet Sauvignon had tremendous extract, and could be harvested in mid-September at optimal ripeness.
The 2004 Rubicon reflects the warm growing conditions of the vintage, displaying a telltale scent of violets and sour cherry flavors, which are the hallmark of this wine. Its super-ripe character delivers a sweet impression, supple tannins, and a prolonged finish of licorice, dark berries, and vanilla.