On October 22nd, Heitz Cellar, one of Napa Valley’s most famous and celebrated wineries, will release what could be one of its rarest and most expensive bottlings: 1969 Heitz Cellar Cuvée No. C-91, a blend of 96% Cabernet Sauvignon and 4% each of Merlot and Cabernet Franc. Originally, this was a blend that Peter S. Heitz, who was the winemaker at the time, used to check the progress of the annual production of the estate’s top wine, the Heitz Martha’s Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon. Because of the amount of work required to produce such a small amount of wine, the blend

Today, Heitz Cellars is unveiling Lot C-91, a rare wine last released in 1969, as part of its 60th anniversary celebration. First released in 1962  after a decade of research and experimentation by Dr. Konstantin Frank, Lot C-91 is a late harvest wine that is aged for a few years in oak barrels but has its grapes harvested late at night, when the grapes are cooler. This makes the wine more acidic than those harvested in the daytime, as well as richer in flavors like fruit, chocolate, and honey. The result is a wine that is perfect for celebrations.

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Half a century later, the legendary Napa Valley estate is releasing Lot C-91 in honor of founder Joe Heitz’s legacy.

Napa Valley, CA (May 7, 2021) – Heitz Cellar announces the limited-edition 2016 Lot C-91 Cabernet Sauvignon, a blend of exceptional quality created as a rare expression by the winery’s late founder, Joe Heitz, in 1969. Lot C-91 is the culmination of 50 years of tireless effort and dedication by the winery to make a unique statement from its famous single vineyard sites. In keeping with Joe’s vision for this wine, Lot C-91 is blended exclusively from Heitz Cellar’s renowned vineyards and offers a unique expression of Napa Valley terroir. This special vintage coincides with the winery’s 60th anniversary this year, and the opening of the new Heitz Cellar tasting room and visitor center, scheduled for January 1. August is planned.

Over the years, studying Joe’s archives and understanding the terroirs of the various sites has allowed Heitz Cellar to present Lot C-91, a historic vintage with great depth, complexity and aging potential.

The chance to recreate the C-91 party and celebrate his 60th birthday. In celebrating the 50th anniversary of the founding of Heitz Cellar, we pay tribute to Joe Heitz and everything he stood for, says Eric Elliott, Estate Manager of Heitz Cellar. He was truly a pioneer in Napa Valley, and many of us in the industry owe some of our most memorable wine experiences to the restraint and authenticity with which he created his wines. Our winemaker, Brittany Sherwood, continues this legacy with elegance in our current wines.

The 2016 C-91 batch was the result of mild summer temperatures and a series of warm days late in the growing season. The first fruits, which are always harvested at night by moonlight, were harvested in mid-August 2016 and the rest of the crop was brought in by mid-October. Winemaker Brittany Sherwood was able to bring all the fruit to the winery in impeccable condition, resulting in incredible elegance and complexity.

The wine matures for nine months in large neutral oak, then two years in a combination of new and used French oak barrels and one year in bottle. This style of wine requires less oak and bottle aging than single vineyard wines and offers remarkable retention of bright fruit.

The 2016 Lot C-91 Cuvée has the density and length that only the world’s truly great wines are capable of. The sweet expression of red and black fruit is the result of a two-month harvest. The presence of spicy elements such as sage, rosemary, charcuterie and black pepper distinguish this vintage from all others. The C-91 Lot Finish exhibits incredible complexity and harmony, and those with patience will be rewarded for decades to come.

Lot C-91 is a real collectors wine. The recommended retail price of Lot C-91 is $100 per 750 ml bottle.  This wine will be for sale at www.heitzcellar.com and in the tasting room.

Moreover, Domaines Demeine present the lot C-91 with a limited edition. The Lawrence family works closely with Demeine Estates, the sales and marketing partner for each of its estates.

Photos and a snapshot of the C-91 bottle in bulk can be found HERE.

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Variety: 100% Cabernet Sauvignon

2016 Lot C-91 Appellation Breakdown:

  • 45% Rutherford AVA
  • 33% Oakville AVA
  • 14% Howell Mountain AVA
  • 8% St Helena AVA

About the Heitz basement.

Founded in 1961, Heitz Cellar is a true legend in Napa Valley that has helped shape the history of winemaking in Napa Valley. Pioneering winemaker Joe Heitz created a classic Napa Valley style with his world-renowned iconic wines, including the region’s first Cabernet Sauvignon, the acclaimed Heitz Cellar Martha’s Vineyard. In 2018, the winery turned an exciting new page: The Heitz family passed this rich heritage on to the Lawrence family, whose deep roots in agriculture and dedication to the same core values of making great wine made them an ideal partner. As part of the Demeine Estates portfolio and with owners Gaylon M. Lawrence, Jr. and Master Sommelier Carlton McCoy, Jr. at the helm, the winery will continue to offer wines in the Heitz style. Heitz wines are made with an unwavering commitment to quality, from 100% Napa Valley organically grown fruit, and represent the Lawrence’s agricultural roots and their commitment to Napa Valley stewardship. For more information about Heitz Cellar, visit www.heitzcellar.com.

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