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Posted - 01/15/2016 03:51am
Singer/Songwriter John Legend & Raymond Vineyards' New Napa Valley Partnership
John Legend and Raymond Vineyards Proprietor Jean-Charles Boisset  

ST. HELENA, CA—When I began to open presents under the tree this past holiday season, I came upon a mysterious black velvet box. Inside was something special that I had wanted to sample since last November when I first heard that Grammy-winning singer/songwriter John Legend had launched a new Napa Valley wine called LVE: Legend Vineyard Exclusive, in collaboration with Raymond Vineyards' Proprietor Jean-Charles Boisset and Winemaker Stephanie Putnam

According to the Raymond Vineyards press office: "LVE wines are a unique collection of rich, soulful and complex wines that embody romance, style, elegance and sophistication. The LVE collection features a Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon, with a suggested retail price of $85, and a Napa Valley Chardonnay, retailing for $45." 

Inside my black velvet box was a bottle of their 2013 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. I'll be popping the cork on this much anticipated beauty just as soon as I can. But I must be patient as it rightfully deserves to be served with a "special occasion comfort food" meal. Perhaps a flank steak, rib eye, or even leg of lamb.

My prized bottle: The LVE: Legend Vineyard Exclusive Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2013

Raymond Vineyards has been producing some absolutely elegant wines and so I am very excited about having the chance to enjoy this robust Cabernet sooner rather than later. According to the winery, this bottle is comprised primarily of "Cabernet from Raymond’s Rutherford and St. Helena estate vineyards, as well as 15% Petite Verdot. Powerful and opulent, it offers a distinct complement to the elegance, finesse and balance presented by Raymond’s well-known Generations and District Collection Cabernets." 

The LVE Napa Valley Chardonnay, which I hope to sample the next time I visit the Raymond Vineyards tasting room, is said to be "a luscious and voluptuous style of Chardonnay with a pronounced fruit expression and creamy, full mouthfeel;" it was barrel-fermented, underwent full malolactic fermentation, and was aged in 60% new French oak barrels.

Jean-Charles Boisset added in the press announcement, “We are ecstatic to partner with our friend John on these beautiful wines. We are inspired by his passion, his love, his emotion and his commitment to Napa Valley and the wine world. Wine and music are the ultimate artistic expressions of who we are, and now to have an opportunity to taste John’s LVE Wines while listening to his music… there is no better pairing! There is so much emotion in John’s music and the LVE wines!”

Given the passionate and expressive wines that Boisset has been releasing lately, I expect the new LVE collection to be be quite delicious indeed. I'll post a follow-up report on the wine itself in the near future.

LVE limited-edition wines are available for purchase through, and can be tasted and purchased at Raymond Vineyards in St. Helena, California (849 Zinfandel Lane, St. Helena, CA 94574). The wines are now also available in select fine wine retailers and restaurants. For more information visit and 

—Tom Silberkleit, Editor
Sonoma, CA • USA

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