Cabernet Sauvignon is one of the world's most widely recognized red wine grape varieties. It is grown in nearly every major wine producing country among a diverse spectrum of climates from Canada's Okanagan Valley to Lebanon's Beqaa Valley. Cabernet Sauvignon became internationally recognized through its prominence in Bordeaux wines where it is often blended with Merlot and Cabernet Franc. From France, the grape spread across Europe and to the New World where it found new homes in places like California's Santa Cruz Mountains, Napa Valley, New Zealand's Hawkes Bay, Australia's Margaret River and Coonawarra regions and Chile's Maipo Valley and Colchagua. The classic profile of Cabernet Sauvignon tends to be full-bodied wines with high tannins and noticeable acidity that contributes to the wine's aging potential. In cooler climates, Cabernet Sauvignon tends to produce wines with blackcurrant notes that can be accompanied by green bell pepper notes, mint and cedar which will all become more pronounced as the wine ages. In more moderate climates the blackcurrant notes are often seen with black cherry and black olives notes while in very hot climates the current flavors can veer towards the over-ripe and "jammy" side.
- Item #: i_200100Bottle Size: 750mlWinemaker Chris Phelps grew up in the hills of the Livermore Valley, east of San Francisco, in a family of wine lovers. His early interest in winemaking grew out of his parents' practice of making a barrel or two of Zinfandel or Cabernet for family and friends. Chris attended UC Davis with the sensible plan of becoming a doctor. However, his love of wine and France pulled him into the school's Enology and Viticulture program, an internship at Louis M. Martini in Napa Valley, and the world of professional winemaking.
From there, Chris then embarked on a 16-month sojourn in Bordeaux, where he met Christian Moueix, who persuaded him to stay on to manage the 1982 harvest at Château des Laurets, in the Puisseguin-St. Emilion district of Bordeaux. It was during this trial-by-fire experience that Chris met his mentor, the brilliant Jean-Claude Berrouet, who served for 44 years as the winemaker of Chateau Petrus. To this day, Chris still credits much of his inspiration as a winemaker and his solid understanding of the technical challenges of the winemaking craft to Berrouet's tutelage. Upon returning to Napa Valley, Chris spent twelve years as winemaker at Dominus, as part of the Berrouet-Moueix team. He considers the 1991 and 1994 vintages to be among the greatest wines he has helped to create. He then spent seven years at Caymus Vineyards, managing all red winemaking from 1999 through 2002.
Ad Vivum (Latin for "toward wine") Cabernet Sauvignon is made from one small micro-block of vines at Sleeping Lady Vineyard, in Yountville, Napa Valley. The vines are located at the vineyard's uppermost western perimeter along the Mayacamas Mountains. Row orientation is southwestnortheast. The vineyard is sustainably and meticulously farmed by the Bettinelli family. The soil profile shows Keefers dark gravelly-sandy clay loam of alluvial origin.
ANTONIO GALLONI 94 POINTS - "The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Sleeping Lady Vineyard is pliant, succulent and super-inviting. Dark cherry, plum, lavender and sweet spice notes are all given an extra kick of plushness in a gracious, silky Cabernet that captures the essence of Sleeping Lady. The purity of the fruit alone is striking. Perfumed, suave and wonderfully detailed, the 2016 is exquisitely beautiful. When I think of reference-point wines from Sleeping Lady, Chris Phelps' Cabernet is very often on top of my mind."
- Item #: i_200180Bottle Size: 750mlIn 2016, Adaptation continued to work with their favorite local growers to craft this wine. The majority of the Cabernet Sauvignon comes from Ink Grade (on the back side of Howell Mountain), which provides the framework and structure to carry this wine. They headed south incorporating vineyards in Pope Valley, Stags Leap District and Oak Knoll that complimented the abundance of tannin, color and structure already in place. This diversity and range within Napa Valley has allowed Adaptation to craft a wine which showcases the unique Napa Valley terroir in an approachable, elegant style.
A blend of 85% Cabernet Sauvignon and 15% Merlot, This approachable 2016 delivers notes of rainier cherries, currants, elderberries, incense, forest floor, and dried herbs with bright acidity, adding freshness and verve to the long persistent finish.
- Item #: i_200450Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 92+ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 92+ POINTS - "A blend of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 23% Syrah, 22% Merlot and 5% Petite Sirah, the 2016 Apex Sonoma County Red Wine sports a deep garnet-purple color and a provocative nose of baked blackcurrants, Black Forest cake, tar and chargrill with hints of bay leaves, truffles and tapenade. Full-bodied, rich and decadently fruited in the mouth, it packs in the black fruit and savory layers with a firm yet plush texture and great length."
- Item #: i_200580Bottle Size: 750mlJeb Dunnuck: 98 PointsJEB DUNNUCK 98 POINTS - "Only the second time this cuvee has been 100% Cabernet Sauvignon, the 2016 ERA is a blend of all the single vineyards and what Jean considered the best wine. I can't argue with him. This wine offers awesome notes of crème de cassis, crushed violets, crushed rocks, hints of mountain scrub brush, and lead pencil shavings. Deep and full-bodied, it has sweet tannins, no hard edges, and a great, great finish. There are 900 cases of this brilliant wine which will benefit from 2-3 years of bottle age and cruise for two decades."
- Item #: i_200340Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 96Located in an ancient volcanic zone in the Sonoma County, Knights Valley (pictured above) offers incredibly unique and diverse soils with a climate perfectly suited to Bordeaux varietals, as demonstrated by the delicious wines made by Peter Michael, Keplinger and Beringer. Anakota is one of Knights Valley's stars that produces wines that personify the rustic elegance and spirit of this volcanic area. With Mount St. Helena looking down upon the vineyard, prevailing westerly winds pass over a large, cold pond and blow uphill, parallel to the rows of vines. These cooling breezes slow down the ripening of the grapes and result in wines that are packed with elegance, complexity and finesse. The wines are crafted by Pierre Seillan, whose deft hand has also created 100 point wines at Verite!
ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 96 POINTS - "The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Helena Montana Vineyard (100% Cabernet Sauvignon) comes from a vineyard that contains more volcanic rock. Deep purple-black in color, it reveals slightly tarry notes to begin, soon opening out to beautiful black cherry, black berry and warm cassis scents with hints of cigar box, charcuterie, licorice and Indian spices. The palate is medium to full-bodied, with a rock-solid frame of grainy tannins and wonderful freshness supporting the densely packed earth layers, finishing very long and savory. This needs time! 920 cases produced."
- Item #: i_211280Bottle Size: 750mlVinous Media: 91Each year, Ancient Peaks crafts the limited-edition Oyster Ridge cuvee to exemplify their finest winemaking efforts. The name Oyster Ridge honors an outcropping that always astonishes visitors to their estate Margarita Vineyard. Here, large white oyster fossils are literally spilling out of the ground, fostering the type of calcium-rich soil that is coveted by winemakers worldwide. The 2016 vintage is a blend of 51% Cabernet Sauvignon, 32% Merlot, 9% Petit Verdot, 4% Cabernet Franc, and 4% Malbec, all from meticulously farmed vineyard blocks cultivated for the Oyster Ridge program.
The 2016 Oyster Ridge offers a sumptuous bouquet of black berry and black currant with notes of creme de cassis, violets, vanilla bean, cedar and graphite. On the palate, the wine is exquisitely dense and integrated, showing chewy layers of black fruits interwoven with accents of caramel, mint, cinnamon spice and new oak. Fine-grained tannins and sleek acidity bring a resounding conclusion to what is nothing less than a blockbuster vintage for Oyster Ridge. This is a wine that will generously evolve in the bottle for years to come.
- Item #: i_201290Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 94Jeb Dunnuck: 93 PointsROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 94 POINTS - "The 2016 Quartet is a blend of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 26% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Franc and 2% Petit Verdot. Deep purple-black in color, it features youthful, vivacious black and red currants notions with an undercurrent of black plums, mulberries, Indian spices and fragrant earth plus wafts of tobacco and new leather. Full-bodied and laden with decadent black fruit and spicy layers, it has a velvety backbone and long spicy finish."
JEB DUNNUCK 93 POINTS - "A blend of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 26% Merlot, and the balance Petit Verdot, aged 22 months in French oak, the 2016 Red Blend Quartet reveals a deep purple color, beautiful notes of cassis, tobacco, iron, and sweet spice, a full-bodied, voluptuous, layered, sexy texture, and a big finish. As Napa Cabernet goes, this beauty is a value. Drink this hedonistic, pleasure-bent beauty any time over the coming 7-8 years."
- Item #: i_206370Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 93WINE ADVOCATE 93 POINTS - "Offering up pretty aromas of buttered apples, citrus oil and subtle white truffle that are subtly framed by new oak, the 2016 Chardonnay Steiner Vineyard is full-bodied, succulent and flavorful, with an ample, even lavish attack but with good underlying, balancing acidity. Concentrated and lingering, it's a lovely example of Sonoma County Chardonnay."
- Item #: i_206430Bottle Size: 750mlSituated in the mountains above Conn Valley and near the base of Howell Mountain, the Buehler Estate vineyards are planted primarily to Cabernet Sauvignon. The juxtaposed topography of steeply sloped hillsides with eastern exposures against very gently sloping hills with southern and southwestern exposures hints at the tumultuous geologic past of the Estate; extensive faulting resulted in at least three distinct soil types. Not surprisingly, grapes grown on the different soils give different characteristics to the finished wines; these differences are often as great as the differences across various Bordeaux varieties and allow Buehler to blend within the variety of Cabernet Sauvignon to craft a truly multi-faceted Estate wine.
The aromas hint at black fruit: ripe black cherries and black plums. Enticing barrel qualities of cola and spice complement the fruit aromas. On the palate, the wine shows layers of deeply extracted flavors that only mature hillside vineyards can render. Buehler's Estate Cabernet is the most age-worthy wine they produce and may be enjoyed anytime over the next 15 years.
- Item #: i_206400Bottle Size: 750mlWinemaker's Tasting Notes: "The wine is brimming with fruit aromas and flavors biased to the black fruit end of the Cabernet spectrum: plums, blackberry, and black currant. Rich and full-bodied on the palate, this Cabernet drinks well on release but will soften and develop with additional age. For those who seek youthful fresh Cabernet fruit aromas and a more structured wine, drink it from 2018 through 2022. If you prefer the less fruity, more developed bottle bouquet aromas and a softer, more velvety wine on the palate, drink it from 2023-2033."
- Item #: i_203120Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 97ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 97 POINTS - "Blended of 97% Cabernet Sauvignon and 3% Petit Verdot matured for 22 months in French oak, 90% new, this vintage has an alcohol level of 14.9%. Deep garnet-purple colored, the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Private Reserve Georges de Latour is still incredibly youthful. Sporting notions of cedar and cinnamon toast to begin, the nose opens out to beautiful notes of warm cassis, crushed red and black plums and kirsch with floral hints of roses and candied violets. Sparks of crushed rocks and cast iron pan plus a touch of dried herbs emerge with coaxing. Full-bodied, rich, bold and energetic in the mouth, the palate reveals a very firm backbone of ripe, grainy tannins and seamless freshness, finishing very long with beautiful mineral accents. To be released in autumn 2019, 8,400 cases were made."
- Item #: i_203150Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 90ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 90 POINTS - "The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley is composed of 78% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Syrah, 6% Petite Sirah, 4% Touriga Nacional, 3% Malbec and 2% other complementary varietals, aged in French, American and European oak (30% new) for 15 months. Deep garnet-purple colored, it leaps boldly from the glass with boisterous creme de cassis, blueberry pie and baking spice scents with touches of chocolate box and potpourri. Full, rich and opulent, it has a plush texture and tons of forward, spicy fruit, finishing fruity. 23,818 cases produced."
- Item #: i_207440Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 95Jeb Dunnuck: 95 PointsJEB DUNNUCK 95 POINTS - "The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Benchland Select is all Cabernet that spent 22 months in 61% new French oak. It's similarly inky colored and has terrific, flowery blue and black fruits, loads of incense, spice, and tobacco, full body, building tannins, and a great, great finish. It's another thrilling wine from this team that plays with the best of the best."
ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 95 POINTS - "The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Benchland Select is 100% Cabernet Sauvignon, with 65% of the fruit coming from Vine Hill Ranch. It was aged 22 months in French oak, 61% new. Very deep garnet-purple colored, the nose features very dark, serious, broody fruit notions of blackcurrant cordial, boysenberries and mulberries with nuances of cigar box, fungi, fertile loam and pencil lead plus a touch of tar. Medium to full-bodied, the palate has a wonderfully plush texture with beautifully integrated freshness and a generous black-fruit core, finishing long with some spicy layers coming through."
- Item #: i_216945Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 90WINE ADVOCATE 90 POINTS - "The 2016 Red Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon has also been blended with 8% Merlot, 2% Petit Verdot and 2% Cabernet Franc. It has a nose of healthy red and black fruit along with the dusty Red Mountain minerality. Medium to full-bodied, the palate reveals a well-made wine with precision and balance and evolving expressions of red flowers, dusty minerality and balancing tannins on the long, well-structured finish. The overall production was 20,000 cases."
- Item #: i_206890Bottle Size: 750mlJeb Dunnuck: 99 PointsJEB DUNNUCK 99 POINTS - "Just about as close to perfection as a wine can get, the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon from winemaker Chris Carpenter comes mostly from mountain vineyards and is 89% Cabernet Sauvignon and 11% Merlot. This full-bodied, rounded, thrillingly textured beauty boasts a saturated purple color as well as a huge nose of creme de cassis, new saddle leather, barbecue smoke, and scorched earth. It has perfect integration of its fruit, tannins, acidity, and oak, carries remarkable power and intensity, yet still glides over the palate with no heaviness or sensation of weight. It's going to be a legendary Napa Valley Cabernet and will have 3 decades or more of longevity."
ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 97 POINTS - "The deep garnet-purple colored 2016 Proprietary Red Wine is blended of 89% Cabernet Sauvignon and 11% Merlot. It opens with compelling chocolate box and licorice scents over a core of black and red currants, warm plums and baking spices with hints of cedar chest and pencil lead. The palate is full-bodied with layers of cassis and kirsch flavors framed by firm, grainy tannins and fabulous freshness, finishing long and spicy. 4,772 cases produced."
- Item #: i_206940Bottle Size: 750mlCerro is the project from Derek Beitler, a young and talented winemaker (Bodega Rancho, Carne Humana, Skyhook), who has learned a lot about making wine from his cousin Joey Wagner of Caymus and Belle Glos, and his brother, Kurt, of Boheme.
A blend of 45% Petit Verdot, 45% Petite Sirah, and 10% Zinfandel, this opaque purplish-black colored wine has a fragrant nose of black fruits, and is very floral. The mouthfeel is rich and smooth, with soft tannins. Flavors of plums, blackberries, dark cherries and espresso.
- Item #: i_210200Bottle Size: 750mlChalk Hill's Estate is a compendium of unique microclimates, exposures and soil types. They are fortunate to be able to make everything from aromatic Sauvignon Blanc to big, bold Syrah. Nowhere is this ideal situation more evident than in their Estate Red, which is just that - the best blend of the red wines made from the estate. Each variety is perfectly matched to the vineyard site. The blend will also vary from year to year, as the vineyard yields and fruit quality depend greatly on the weather during springtime bloom and set, and during harvest. Cabernet and Malbec were the stars in 2016, and form the base of this Estate Red. Grapes grown on the rocky slopes of their Estate West vineyard make up the balance of the blend. This year, the final blend is comprised of 47% Cabernet Sauvignon, 37% Malbec, 9% Petit Verdot, and 7% Merlot.
Chalk Hill's 2016 Estate Red opens with bold and intense aromas of blackberry, anise, tobacco leaf and dark chocolate. The palate is rich and savory, with layered flavors of black cherry, dark chocolate and leather with oak influences of vanilla and toast. Though firm, the tannins are rounded by a balanced acidity and a long and smooth finish. Though appealing in its youth, this wine will also age beautifully over the next 15 years.
- Item #: i_236040Bottle Size: 750mlCharles Krug's estate vineyards produce Cabernet Sauvignon with flavors of ripe black cherry, blackberry and black currant with hints of dried blueberry and cocoa. A sturdy structure and generous black fruits lend definition to a long, memorable finish.
- Item #: i_276060Bottle Size: 750mlWinemaker's Tasting Notes: "Bright fruit, spice and texture come from the high elevations of Lake County and dark fruits, old-world characters and dried herbs come from the low elevations of Napa County. The merriment of the two create tobacco, cherry, and cassis aromas. On the palate, we get dried fruits, old world spice, integrated oak, notes of cedar and a lingering finish."
- Item #: i_214700Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 99+Jeb Dunnuck: 99 PointsROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 99+ POINTS - "A blend of 86% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Cabernet Franc, 6% Merlot and 2% Petit Verdot, the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Poetry needs a little coaxing to begin to unfurl the tightly wound yet exciting scents of blackcurrant cordial, blackberry preserves, warm redcurrants and kirsch plus fragrant nuances of candied violets, underbrush, cigar boxes, menthol and star anise. Full-bodied and built like a brick house in the mouth, the palate features an almost impenetrable structure of super ripe tannins framing the taut, muscular fruit, finishing long. This beauty needs at least 5-6 years to begin to blossom, after which it may well warrant a perfect score."
JEB DUNNUCK 99 POINTS - "Similarly colored, the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Poetry comes from shallow, volcanic soils in the Stags Leap AVA and is a blend of 86% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Cabernet Franc, 6% Merlot, and 2% Petit Verdot. It offers killer notes of creme de cassis, black raspberries, toasted spices, vanilla, and exotic flowers. These carry to a profound, incredibly intense, layered wine that has no hard edges, perfect balance, building tannins, and a great, great finish. This is another magical wine from this team that ranks with some of the finest wines ever made from this valley. As with most 2016s, it has some upfront charm and accessibility, yet will be at its best with 4-6 years of bottle age and will keep for 3-4 decades."
- Item #: i_214930Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 93ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 93 POINTS - ""The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Stags Leap District is a blend of 79% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Merlot, 8% Petit Verdot and 2% Cabernet Franc. Deep garnet-purple colored, it gives up notes of fresh blackcurrants, warm plums, unsmoked cigars and tilled soil with wafts of kirsch, sandalwood and dusty soil. Full-bodied and richly fruited in the mouth, it has a firm backbone of grainy tannins and a long earthy finish."
- Item #: i_212030Bottle Size: 750MLOnce in the glass, the Clos Pegase Estate Cabernet Sauvignon reflects an opaque dark purple core. As the aromatics waft towards the nose, they deliver generous layers of cassis, antique wood, cigar box and black currant. On the palate, brooding dark fruits give way to briar, black currant and forest floor. More subtle notes of graphite, wet clay and seasoned leather, transition across the palate. The tannins are nicely balanced by the lush fruits which are in-turn kept fresh by the crisp acidity. This Cabernet Sauvignon continues to evolve on the palate showing depth and complexity with a lengthy finish.
- Item #: i_212610Bottle Size: 750MLFor more than 40 years, Conn Creek Winery has focused on Cabernet Sauvignon. In search of the best Cabernet Sauvignon, they've discovered many exceptional single-vineyard sites throughout Napa Valley. Today, Conn Creek sources fruit from those prized vineyards in nearly all of Napa Valley's diverse sub-appellations, such as St. Helena, Yountville, Oakville, Calistoga, Mt. Veeder, and Howell Mountain, to provide winemaker Mike McGrath with an unparalleled palette from which to blend each wine. It's an approach that captures the "Best of Napa Valley."
Concentrated cranberry and raspberry notes with underlying cigar box notes. Mouthfeel consists of broad, full tannins with a touch of black pepper on the finish.