We are very familiar with Laetitia Estates Vineyard and Winery having the pleasure of visiting their picturesque vineyards on many occasions.

Recently we decided to explore NADIA, the sister label to Laetitia Estate Vineyard & Winery that has recently undergone a revamp.  These lovely wines feature fruit from the Santa Barbara Highlands Vineyard in eastern Santa Barbara County. The Vineyard is located outside the more populated wine regions of the Central Coast and its influence on high-end wines has not gone unnoticed with producers from Sans Liege to Grace Wine Company sourcing Highlands’ fruit.  It is unique in that fact it is located 3,200 feet above sea level, with warm days, afternoon breezes, and cold nights.  The vineyards temperature can vary by as much as 50 degrees in one day.

“The Highlands Vineyard, which has ideal weather conditions, is phenomenal for Bordeaux and Rhône wines,” said NADIA Winemaker, Eric Hickey.  “And with first pick of the best fruit, it makes sense for us to showcase those varieties with the NADIA label.”

NADIA has just released the 2011 Santa Barbara Highlands Sauvignon Blanc and the 2010 Santa Barbara Highlands Cabernet Sauvignon and a very good reason for the CUISINEIST.com Tasting Panel to get to work.

NADIA 2011 Sauvignon Blanc, Santa Barbara County, Santa Barbara Highlands Vineyard.

 The 2011 Vintage was a cool one producing a lighter than usual crop. Because of this we expected a good concentration of fruit in the finished wine. This Sauvignon Blanc was pressed, chilled and settled for 24 hours. It was then placed in Stainless Steel for 6 weeks and aged in French Oak.

In the glass, this lovely wine was straw-colored and light-medium bodied. On the nose, apricot aromas jumped out of the class teasing our senses with additional aromas of mango and light citrus. On the palate, signature notes of grass were followed by the citrus flavors of lime and light wet rock for minerality and a soft finish with very balanced acidity.  We were pleasantly surprised by this Sauvignon Blanc that showed classic notes of the varietal but had a sense of place that we won’t forget. The Nadia 2011 Sauvignon Blanc is very food friendly and a nice addition to any cellar.  Buy now and enjoy.

Cuisineist Tasting Panel Sep 2012  91points


NADIA 2010   Cabernet Sauvignon, Santa Barbara County, Santa Barbara Highlands Vineyard


The 2010 Vintage was slightly cooler than normal and harvest was delayed three weeks to allow for more hang time resulting in higher fruit concentration. After crush, the wine was racked and then aged in Medium Radoux barrels for 20 months.

In the glass the wine showed purple hues moving into a dark garnet near the rim and Medium bodied. The classic notes of black currant on the nose move into aromas of clove, red berries, smoke and earth. On the palate, intense red fruit pleases the palate with smoke and cassis that marries into a long finish with medium tannins and very nice structure to the very end.

The NADIA 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon was a pleasure to enjoy. Its big, bold red fruit is not overwhelming and allows this very balanced Cabernet show off its lighter side on the finish. The 14.2 % Alcohol is spot on with the intense yet supple flavors all at the same time. Every cellar needs a nice Cabernet and the NADIA 2010 Cabernet would feel right at home on your table. Buy Now, Drink Now or hold it for the cellar. No matter when you drink it will be pleasing to your palate.

Cuisineist Tasting Panel Sep 2012  90points