Quella is named for the 9 acre site in the eastern hills that overlooks Napa Valley.
From the Winery:
Making its debut with the 2006 vintage, the name is derived from the German word for a pristine source or an artesian aquifer. This property is steeply sloped facing southwest. The site is an ancient riverbed composed of cobble and rocks interwoven with pockets of tufa (volcanic ash) that were uplifted during the last volcanic activity in the area. Quella displays an almost ethereal quality of blue fruits, graphite, and a vibrant, subtle finish.
SOIL: Ancient uplifted riverbed covered with Tufa (volcanic ash). Southwest Exposure.
The challenges of the 2017 vintage presented new learnings for this site of ancient river cobble and volcanic ash. Although Quella is known for its delicacy and precision, the vines retain a tremendous strength that has allowed them to thrive in a thoroughly Spartan environment. With the help of spring rains before budbreak the season culminated with an early harvest on September 5th and concluded two weeks later.
The nose is classic Quella: fresh blue fruit and a nod towards minerality. This Quella demonstrates a zest for life that never shouts, but stands in perfect posture with a natural, beaming smile. The texture of the wine is effortless—light on its feet, yet simultaneously deep. The tannins follow an almost choreographed line on the palate. As the finish lingers, it feels remarkably comfortable in its skin for this early stage of its life.
97pts James Suckling:
"Aromatic and beautiful with currants, flowers and wet earth. Full-bodied, tight and layered with juicy tannins that melt into the wine. Compressed and refined. So perfumed."
95 Wine Spectator:
"Enticing, with a mix of steeped loganberry, mulberry and blackberry fruit flavors that are laced with black licorice, bramble and singed apple wood notes. There's a loamy edge underneath it all and solid, focusing grip harnessing the finish. A contemplative wine, rather than showy."
95 Jeb Dunnuck:
"More dark fruits, Bing cherry, candied violets, and Asian spice notes emerge from the 2017 Quella, which always has an exotic, complex style. Medium to full-bodied and nicely textured, with some chalky tannins, it’s another terrific 2017 that will benefit from just short-term cellaring and have two decades of prime drinking."
95 Robert Parker's Wine Advocate:
"The 2017 Quella comes from a steep, southwest-facing vineyard in the eastern Vaca hillsides, just up from Joseph Phelps's winery and Denali Estate. Deep garnet-purple colored, it explodes with bombastic scents of stewed plums, boysenberries, crème de cassis and kirsch plus hints of black truffles, tar and damp soil. The palate is full-bodied and velvety, jam-packed with blackberry and plum preserves flavors with lots of savory nuances on the long finish."