2016 Old Sparky


Comprised of the finest barrels from our cellar, the Schrader Old Sparky beautifully reveals ripe black fruits, especially blackberry and blueberry, mixed with notes of roasted espresso and dark chocolate. On the palate, the well-woven tannins provide great balance to the exceptional fruit core. Flavors of currants and tobacco lead into the savory finish on this opulent and intense wine. The 2016 Schrader Old Sparky is a dazzling wine and will continue to evolve and gain even more complexity after a few years in the cellar.

  • Vintage 2016
  • Vineyard Beckstoffer To Kalon Vineyard
  • Appellation Oakville, Napa Valley
  • Varietal Cabernet Sauvignon
  • Clone Clones 4, 6, and 337
  • Cooperage Aged 20 months in rare Darnajou French oak barrels
  • Winemaker Thomas River Brown
  • Tasting Notes

    Comprised of the finest barrels from our cellar, the Schrader Old Sparky beautifully reveals ripe black fruits, especially blackberry and blueberry, mixed with notes of roasted espresso and dark chocolate. On the palate, the well-woven tannins provide great balance to the exceptional fruit core. Flavors of currants and tobacco lead into the savory finish on this opulent and intense wine. The 2016 Schrader Old Sparky is a dazzling wine and will continue to evolve and gain even more complexity after a few years in the cellar.

  • Accolades

    100 Pts. “The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Old Sparky is very deep purple-black in color with a wonderfully pure nose of blackcurrant cordial, blackberry preserves and black cherry pie with nuances of dried bay leaves, dusty soil, garrigue and new leather plus touches of unsmoked cigars and pencil shavings. Full-bodied, concentrated and jam-packed with flavors, the palate is pure hedonism with a solid line of ripe tannins and great freshness, finishing very long.”
    — Lisa Perrotti-Brown, The Wine Advocate

    100 Pts. “My notes on the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Old Sparky Beckstoffer To Kalon Vineyard started with “Wow, what a nose” and finished with a few expletives. Based largely on the T6 Cabernet Sauvignon from To Kolan, with smaller amounts of the RBS, CCS, and Schrader, it’s a massive wine by any measure yet carries everything perfectly, with perfumed notes of crème de cassis, incense, flowers, and exotic spice, full-bodied richness, an expansive, mulit-dimensional texture, sweet tannins, and no sensation of weight or heaviness. It’s a monumental bottle of wine that made me want to downgrade every other wine I tasted for this report. It’s bottled only in magnum, so do your best to hold off for 6-7 years (good luck!) and it will keep for 3-4 decades. Bravo to the whole team at Schrader for a truly magical wine.”
    — Jeb Dunnuck, JebDunnuck.com

    95 Pts. “Features a large core of red and black currant, blackberry and plum compote flavors that are juicy and well-defined, backed by plush tannins that meld nicely through the finish. Light tobacco and violet hints skitter through for added range. Big yet sneakily long. Best from 2021 through 2035. 430 cases made.”
    — James Molesworth, Wine Spectator

  • Vineyard

    First planted in 1868 by viticultural and winemaking icon Hamilton Crabb, To Kalon Vineyard® has long been regarded as the source of Napa Valley’s finest Cabernet Sauvignon grapes. Within the prime vineyard blocks, an alluvial fan provides excellent and varied mineral deposits, and the rich soils are filled with marine sediment that gives our wines their distinctive profiles. The vines receive full sun and optimal heat during the day and are cooled by marine fog at night. These conditions allow the Cabernet Sauvignon planted in the vineyard to display its own unique character, and this celebration of individuality is the essence of Schrader ®.

  • Vintage

    The 2016 vintage was marked early in the growing season by rains that helped to recharge the suffering aquifers with much needed rain that helped to alleviate the drought. As the growing season began flowering presented itself with a small crop that was helped through the season by near perfect summer weather. These ideal conditions continued through harvest where we were able to pick at optimal concentration. The resulting wines from this vintage have intense concentration with a great natural balance that likens itself to the consistent growing season.