When I first moved to the valley, my friend Ryan Graham introduced me to a couple who frequented Yountville’s Bouchon restaurant and sipped countless bottles of Paradigm they purchased at the bar. A bit rich for my blood (the lifestyle, not the wine), I have not had the chance to taste much Paradigm since.
When I saw Paradigm on the list of wineries present at Premiere Napa Valley’s Oakville Grower tasting at Far Niente, I sought them out. The 2009 cabernet sauvignon ($68) was poured into my glass and it was love at first sip. Heidi Barrett has created a beautifully structured wine with intriguing dark fruits and a freshness that lifts the flavors away from being dense and overbearing.
Meeting Heidi for the first time the following day at Premiere’s Saturday barrel tasting, I didn’t ask her how she traveled to the CIA that day, but if you saw a helicopter in the sky, Heidi was likely the pilot. Heidi calls learning to fly one of her greatest achievements in life. That, and the Paradigm, I would say, among many others.
(To submit a Napa Valley wine for this column, bring it to the St. Helena Star office, 1200 Main St., Suite C during regular business hours. There’s no guarantee your wine will be chosen to be featured, but all wines will be evaluated and considered. With questions, concerns, contact Catherine Seda, 707-337-6840 or email@example.com.)
— Catherine Seda is the Star’s tasting panel writer.