Cameron Hughes Private Reserve

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Post #1  Postby Greg Smith » November 4th 2015, 12:25pm

Cameron is out today with a 6 bottle vertical (2006-2011) from a "cult" producer. Looking at the description and COLA could this possibly be Harlan The Maiden? Someone tell me that is impossible.

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Post #2  Postby Kyle Schlachter » November 4th 2015, 12:34pm

Pretty sure Harlan did not change ownership...
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Post #3  Postby Anton D » November 4th 2015, 12:46pm

Is Cameron Hughes wine what they have tastings of at Costco?
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Post #4  Postby Nate Simon » November 4th 2015, 1:08pm

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Post #5  Postby Todd F r e n c h » November 4th 2015, 1:19pm

Cameron sent me a pack of this vertical to try with some Berserkers, and we're scheduled to do the tasting on the 16th. Won't help those of you who plan to purchase it, though, sorry, but that's the soonest I could get an OC gang together, as apparently no weekends are available...ever.

I know nothing more about them other than the 'cult' story shown on the website, but we'll be posting notes after the tasting. I'm told I will need to open them for quite a few hours, or double decant them.
Apparently I'm lazy, have a narrow agenda, and offer little in the way of content and substance (RMP) (and have a "penchant for gossip" -KBI)
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Post #6  Postby david.heath » November 4th 2015, 3:57pm

Could this be a Napa Valley Reserve bottling? I think I read you can transfer your NPR membership, which could be what Cameron is referring to with "quietly changed hands between two individuals of considerable wealth."
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Post #7  Postby Jeff Stettner » November 4th 2015, 4:18pm

My father forwarded me the email today and my immediate thought was Sloan Estate. Pieces all would fit together...

Winery sold without the existing inventory, expensive consultant, $200-300 price tag. Pure speculation on my part, but at least there's some logic to it?
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Post #8  Postby Alan Eden » November 4th 2015, 4:25pm

Anyone tried the wines, it is tempting but not knowing what your drinking is somehow disconcerting to me
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Post #9  Postby D@v1dZ » November 4th 2015, 4:36pm

If the bottles were sold to CH as "shiners", wouldn't the cork give away the producer?
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Post #10  Postby Kyle Schlachter » November 4th 2015, 4:40pm

Jeff Stettner wrote:My father forwarded me the email today and my immediate thought was Sloan Estate. Pieces all would fit together...

Winery sold without the existing inventory, expensive consultant, $200-300 price tag. Pure speculation on my part, but at least there's some logic to it?


Was my thought too, but... Timing doesn't quite work. Vineyard changed ownership. Alcohol levels posted in Herr Heimoff's reviews don't work. So probably not Sloan.
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Post #11  Postby Nolan E » November 4th 2015, 5:37pm

DavidZ wrote:If the bottles were sold to CH as "shiners", wouldn't the cork give away the producer?

I haven't been involved in tons of shiner bottlings, but the ones I've done have been with unbranded corks.
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Post #12  Postby Greg Smith » November 4th 2015, 6:55pm

But why would the most recent COLA registry (label approval) by Cameron Hughes (9/15/15) list Harlan Estate Winery? Those more familiar with COLA than myself might provide more insight.
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Post #13  Postby Rick Price » November 4th 2015, 7:22pm

Could the dates of the vintages be a clue (through 2011, but not 2012, meaning the winery was sold in 2012)? Araujo matches that description; how many others would fit?
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Post #14  Postby AlexO » November 4th 2015, 7:37pm

Rick Price wrote:Could the dates of the vintages be a clue (through 2011, but not 2012, meaning the winery was sold in 2012)? Araujo matches that description; how many others would fit?


Pillar Rock Perhaps?
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Post #15  Postby Carlton McCrindle » November 4th 2015, 7:40pm

Nolan E wrote:
DavidZ wrote:If the bottles were sold to CH as "shiners", wouldn't the cork give away the producer?

I haven't been involved in tons of shiner bottlings, but the ones I've done have been with unbranded corks.


A reviewer on the CH website noted that between the "design" on the cork and Cam's notes, he believes he knows who produced the wine.
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Post #16  Postby Nolan E » November 4th 2015, 7:41pm

AlexO wrote:
Rick Price wrote:Could the dates of the vintages be a clue (through 2011, but not 2012, meaning the winery was sold in 2012)? Araujo matches that description; how many others would fit?


Pillar Rock Perhaps?
If they're shiners, it's the wrong shaped bottle (assuming they didn't change bottle shape just to bottle shiners).
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Post #17  Postby david.heath » November 4th 2015, 7:45pm

Greg Smith wrote:But why would the most recent COLA registry (label approval) by Cameron Hughes (9/15/15) list Harlan Estate Winery? Those more familiar with COLA than myself might provide more insight.


I'm not that familiar with COLA, but Harlan does handle the Napa Valley Reserve wines and many (all?) of them are registered on COLA by Harlan. Napa Valley Reserve wines have appeared on flash sites before near that price range ($80 or so).
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Post #18  Postby Rick Price » November 4th 2015, 7:54pm

Pillar Rock is a good guess, but it won't work because the land was sold, but not the winery or the brand -- with the CH wine it's the reverse.

The clues here are:

- Vintages from 2006-2011
- The winery changed hands between two individuals, i.e. the purchaser was not a corporation
- Normal pricing of the wine (presumably full retail) is $200-$250/bottle
- Vineyards in Oakville, Rutherford, Yountville, and St. Helena
- One of the "most iconoclastic" cult producers
- Produced in 100% French oak (interestingly this part seems to have disappeared from the CH website, although it's still on line elsewhere -- I thought this was pretty common though)
- "Production overseen by the world's foremost wine consultant"

It's like one of the Garagiste mystery wines, except more promising...
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Post #19  Postby Greg Smith » November 4th 2015, 8:05pm

david.heath wrote:
Greg Smith wrote:But why would the most recent COLA registry (label approval) by Cameron Hughes (9/15/15) list Harlan Estate Winery? Those more familiar with COLA than myself might provide more insight.


I'm not that familiar with COLA, but Harlan does handle the Napa Valley Reserve wines and many (all?) of them are registered on COLA by Harlan. Napa Valley Reserve wines have appeared on flash sites before near that price range ($80 or so).

Napa Valley Reserve could be a good guess.
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Post #20  Postby Dennis Kanagie » November 4th 2015, 8:06pm

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Post #21  Postby Andrew Breskin » November 4th 2015, 8:20pm

Why not Bond? They have those plots all over the place
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Post #22  Postby Nolan E » November 4th 2015, 8:23pm

As far as I know, Bond hasn't been sold.
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Post #23  Postby Todd F r e n c h » November 4th 2015, 8:28pm

I'll post pics of the corks once we open them, but that's not for almost a couple weeks yet...someone else might get to open them sooner
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Post #24  Postby brigcampbell » November 4th 2015, 8:31pm

We're the worst! I'm bummed I can't make this but traveling 10 straight days for work.

I really like blind tasting and this is shaping up to be a real treat.

Please make everyone that attends hang a score! champagne.gif

Todd F r e n c h wrote:Cameron sent me a pack of this vertical to try with some Berserkers, and we're scheduled to do the tasting on the 16th. Won't help those of you who plan to purchase it, though, sorry, but that's the soonest I could get an OC gang together, as apparently no weekends are available...ever.

I know nothing more about them other than the 'cult' story shown on the website, but we'll be posting notes after the tasting. I'm told I will need to open them for quite a few hours, or double decant them.
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Post #25  Postby Todd F r e n c h » November 4th 2015, 8:33pm

brigcampbell wrote:We're the worst! I'm bummed I can't make this but traveling 10 straight days for work.

I really like blind tasting and this is shaping up to be a real treat.

Please make everyone that attends hang a score! champagne.gif

Todd F r e n c h wrote:Cameron sent me a pack of this vertical to try with some Berserkers, and we're scheduled to do the tasting on the 16th. Won't help those of you who plan to purchase it, though, sorry, but that's the soonest I could get an OC gang together, as apparently no weekends are available...ever.

I know nothing more about them other than the 'cult' story shown on the website, but we'll be posting notes after the tasting. I'm told I will need to open them for quite a few hours, or double decant them.

With you not coming, who the hell is going to write down notes???

Sorry folks, no notes with no Brig.
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Post #26  Postby brigcampbell » November 4th 2015, 8:33pm

Todd F r e n c h wrote:I'll post pics of the corks once we open them, but that's not for almost a couple weeks yet...someone else might get to open them sooner


Cut the foil and put a flashlight on the neck!
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Post #27  Postby ykwon » November 4th 2015, 8:40pm

Carlton McCrindle wrote:
Nolan E wrote:
DavidZ wrote:If the bottles were sold to CH as "shiners", wouldn't the cork give away the producer?

I haven't been involved in tons of shiner bottlings, but the ones I've done have been with unbranded corks.


A reviewer on the CH website noted that between the "design" on the cork and Cam's notes, he believes he knows who produced the wine.


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Post #28  Postby CJ Beazley » November 5th 2015, 5:26am

Rick Price wrote:Pillar Rock is a good guess, but it won't work because the land was sold, but not the winery or the brand -- with the CH wine it's the reverse.

The clues here are:

- Vintages from 2006-2011
- The winery changed hands between two individuals, i.e. the purchaser was not a corporation
- Normal pricing of the wine (presumably full retail) is $200-$250/bottle
- Vineyards in Oakville, Rutherford, Yountville, and St. Helena
- One of the "most iconoclastic" cult producers
- Produced in 100% French oak (interestingly this part seems to have disappeared from the CH website, although it's still on line elsewhere -- I thought this was pretty common though)
- "Production overseen by the world's foremost wine consultant"

It's like one of the Garagiste mystery wines, except more promising...


If not for the price I would say Mayacamas, kind of a stretch to call it a "cult" but they are in business to sell wine.
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Post #29  Postby Ian Dorin » November 5th 2015, 6:03am

Gemstone?
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Post #30  Postby mike pobega » November 5th 2015, 6:31am

I just purchased this plus 4 other vineyard designates. I am wrapping CLONYC 48 around it. Seats filled in 6 hours. Tentative December 16th. Should be fun.
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Post #31  Postby Steve Nordhoff » November 5th 2015, 8:19am

Todd F r e n c h wrote:
brigcampbell wrote:We're the worst! I'm bummed I can't make this but traveling 10 straight days for work.

I really like blind tasting and this is shaping up to be a real treat.

Please make everyone that attends hang a score! champagne.gif

Todd F r e n c h wrote:Cameron sent me a pack of this vertical to try with some Berserkers, and we're scheduled to do the tasting on the 16th. Won't help those of you who plan to purchase it, though, sorry, but that's the soonest I could get an OC gang together, as apparently no weekends are available...ever.

I know nothing more about them other than the 'cult' story shown on the website, but we'll be posting notes after the tasting. I'm told I will need to open them for quite a few hours, or double decant them.

With you not coming, who the hell is going to write down notes???

Sorry folks, no notes with no Brig.


I will post some notes
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Post #32  Postby Kris Patten » November 5th 2015, 8:49pm

CJ Beazley wrote:
Rick Price wrote:Pillar Rock is a good guess, but it won't work because the land was sold, but not the winery or the brand -- with the CH wine it's the reverse.

The clues here are:

- Vintages from 2006-2011
- The winery changed hands between two individuals, i.e. the purchaser was not a corporation
- Normal pricing of the wine (presumably full retail) is $200-$250/bottle
- Vineyards in Oakville, Rutherford, Yountville, and St. Helena
- One of the "most iconoclastic" cult producers
- Produced in 100% French oak (interestingly this part seems to have disappeared from the CH website, although it's still on line elsewhere -- I thought this was pretty common though)
- "Production overseen by the world's foremost wine consultant"

It's like one of the Garagiste mystery wines, except more promising...


If not for the price I would say Mayacamas, kind of a stretch to call it a "cult" but they are in business to sell wine.


Mayacamas is a pretty poor guess, they are in Mt. Veeder to start and never sell for $200-250.

Can't sort out why everyone ignores the OP and the COLA that it comes from Harlan....which Harlan project would be the question. I'd bet Napa Valley Reserve is a solid guess.
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Post #33  Postby Kyle Schlachter » November 5th 2015, 10:00pm

There is second COLA up with Lot 2012 listed as fanciful name. Yes, the vertical pack COLA was done by Harlan (Lot 2006). None of the changes on the label/wine through Lot 2011 necessitate a new COLA so presumably they all were labeled by Harlan. Most likely a different brand Harlan purchased and wanted to clear out old wine not associated with their future plan. Since this all happened "quietly" I doubt many people know about which other wine was involved. NVR and Mascot (maybe Maiden) are decent guesses. Harlan does also source fruit so "estate" could also mean any long-term contract vineyard and not Harlan or Bond fruit. Seems rather sloppy they put Harlan on CH COLA if they used him for his discretion. Either I'm sure Cameron has been following this thread with a big smile on his face...
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Post #34  Postby Kris Patten » November 5th 2015, 10:21pm

Kyle,

Why insinuate that a winery can hide selling finished alcohol to another entity.....do you think it's legal to sell it anonymously? The government tracks every transaction for tax purposes.
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Post #35  Postby Alan Eden » November 5th 2015, 11:26pm

Whats COLA please
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Post #36  Postby Dennis Kanagie » November 6th 2015, 5:30am

Alan Eden wrote:Whats COLA please


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Post #37  Postby Kevin Porter » November 6th 2015, 5:55am

Alan Eden wrote:Whats COLA please


Not positive myself, but quick google got this - http://www.ttb.gov/labeling/colas.shtml
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Post #38  Postby M A T T H A R T L E Y » November 6th 2015, 6:22am

Napa valley reserve or perhaps Ladera Lone Canyom shiners..
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Post #39  Postby Walt Hoehler » November 6th 2015, 6:38am

The guessing game is certainly entertaining, but think for a minute. The deeper this board digs, the more difficult (marginally) it will be for Cam to come up with these (and other) cherries. The disincentives grow for the next winery looking to move juice.

Let it go and enjoy the wine. We'll all be better off. Sorta like Fight Club and B*rn's. [cheers.gif]
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Post #40  Postby Kyle Schlachter » November 6th 2015, 8:58am

Kris Patten wrote:Kyle,

Why insinuate that a winery can hide selling finished alcohol to another entity.....do you think it's legal to sell it anonymously? The government tracks every transaction for tax purposes.


Yes, wineries do it all the time!! Apart from knowing Harlan applied for the COLA and the juice is at least 75% from Napa Valley we know nothing else about wine for a FACT. We can trust CH, but that still does not necessarily mean the wine was produced by Harlan (or any of its subsidiary wineries). The team at Harlan knows how to get rid of excess wine without the public knowing that it is selling for 1/10 the price in a different label. Ttb does not track where grapes or bulk wine comes from, but wineries are required to keep records in case of an audit. I can't speak to CA law, but volume and appellation are the things tracked so excise tax and COLAs can be verified.
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Post #41  Postby Kyle Schlachter » November 6th 2015, 9:01am

COLAs are Certificate Of Label Approval. TTB needs to approve that the alcohol and appellation on labels are accurate and that there is no lewd text or graphics. Also to be sure fonts are correct size and government warning is on (and spelled correctly)!
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Post #42  Postby ykwon » November 6th 2015, 9:54am

Been tracking this thread. No closer to making a purchasing decision. lol
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Post #43  Postby Corey N. » November 6th 2015, 10:00am

Alan Eden wrote:Whats COLA please


Certificate of Label Approval ( COLA)
http://www.ttb.gov/labeling/
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Post #44  Postby David McMillen » November 6th 2015, 10:01am

I took a flyer on it.
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Post #45  Postby ericleehall » November 6th 2015, 11:59am

Alan Eden wrote:Whats COLA please


COLAs (Certificates of Label Approval) from the Federal TTB...

I'm pretty sure that when a winery/distributor et al buys shiners, the bottling winery must get the label approval, on behalf of the new products owners.

I am excited to hear how this tastes....
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Post #46  Postby keithevans » November 6th 2015, 6:03pm

PM if you want to know what this stuff is.
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Post #47  Postby Dave H. » November 7th 2015, 7:32pm

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Post #48  Postby D@v1dZ » November 7th 2015, 7:59pm

If Heimoff thinks they are overripe, then NASA probably can use them to send men to Mars.
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Post #49  Postby Todd F r e n c h » November 8th 2015, 7:06am

Dave H. wrote:First reviews I've seen of these.
http://www.steveheimoff.com/index.php/2 ... -vertical/

I wonder with the cult labels on them if these would have the same notes/scores
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Post #50  Postby Corey N. » November 8th 2015, 7:15am

DavidZ wrote:If Heimoff thinks they are overripe, then NASA probably can use them to send men to Mars.


The alcohol levels alone were a no go for me.
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