- Item #: i_204410Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 97+Vinous Media: 98Jeb Dunnuck: 100JEB DUNNUCK 100 POINTS - "Moving to the single vineyard releases, the 2016 Melbury is pure perfection in a glass and is the finest vintage of this cuvee I've tasted. Awesome notes of cassis, blackcurrants, toasted bread, white flowers, and spice give way to an ethereal, seamless, yet opulent wine that has that rare mix of power and elegance possessed by all truly great wines. Full-bodied, concentrated, and with building yet perfectly ripe tannins, do your best to give bottles 4-5 years of bottle age. It will evolve effortlessly for 30 years or more."
ANTONIO GALLONI 98 POINTS - "The 2016 Melbury is powerful and yet medium in body, with layers of exotic spice, dark red cherry, blood orange, leather, licorice and star anise that give it an exotic character I don't remember seeing in the past. Despite its mid-weight profile, the Melbury has plenty of supporting structure. Over the last year, the Melbury has gained a bit of weight, but remains quite focused. Sometimes the Melbury suffers by being the first vineyard-designate poured at Bond. Its remarkable allure is evident nonetheless. This is an impressive showing."
ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 97+ POINTS - "Overlooking Lake Hennessy up on Pritchard Hill, Melbury vineyard has produced a beautifully elegant and vivacious signature in 2016, which clearly reveals the personality that this incredible site tends to want to give. Deep garnet-purple colored, the 2016 Melbury comes bounding out of the glass with expressive black and red currants notes followed by wild blueberries, warm plums, pencil shavings and wild sage plus wafts of lavender and crushed rocks. Medium to full-bodied, the palate is practically electric with energetic fruit, framed by firm, grainy tannins and invigorating freshness, finishing long and minerally."
- Item #: i_204500Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 97+Vinous Media: 97ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 97+ POINTS - "Very deep purple-black colored, the 2014 Pluribus offers up notions of crushed black plums, black currant cordial and pencil shavings over a meaty core of chargrill and beef drippings plus hints of Chinese five spice and underbrush. Full-bodied and firmly framed with chewy tannins and a lively backbone, it features plenty of earthy and savory layers, finishing long and minerally."
ANTONIO GALLONI 97 POINTS - "The 2014 Pluribus is stellar. Once again, I am deeply impressed with the Pluribus. Inky blue/purplish fruit, lavender, mint, plum and licorice infuse this super-expressive, resonant Spring Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon. Pluribus is the most improved Bond wine. This flight of 2014 makes that quite evident."
- Item #: i_214180Bottle Size: 750mlVinous Media: 95ANTONIO GALLONI 95 POINTS - "The 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon is super-refined, polished and articulate, with mid-weight structure and fine overall balance. Readers should expect a somewhat laid-back wine by Dalla Valle's standards. In 2014, the Cabernet Sauvignon is especially aromatic and nuanced. It should drink well with minimal cellaring."
- Item #: i_214170Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 95+Vinous Media: 95+ANTONIO GALLONI 95+ POINTS - "The 2014 Maya is powerful, compact and closed in on itself. That's not much of a surprise given the wine was just bottled a few months ago. Dark, powerful and intense, the 2014 offers plenty of energy, but is also holding back much of its potential at this stage. The blend is 75% Cabernet Sauvignon and 25% Cabernet Franc, which is to say more Cabernet than has been the norm in recent years. There is plenty of intensity to the pomegranate, plum, red cherry and blood orange flavors, but the wine needs time to come into its own."
ROBERT PARKER 95+ POINTS - "...the 2014 Maya Proprietary Red may not be as perfect as the 2013 was, but it is a fabulous effort. Finishing at 14.6% alcohol, this wine (generally a blend of about 60% Cabernet Franc and the rest Cabernet Sauvignon) has incredibly gorgeous aromatics of black and blue fruits, forest floor, violets, and an almost Graves-like, scorched earth, gravelly nuance. The wine hits the palate with a full-bodied richness and terrific harmony among its structural elements such as alcohol, acidity, tannin and wood, with moderately sweet tannins in the finish. It is a good 30- to 35-year wine, as most Mayas have tended to be, and is impressive and surprisingly structured for a 2014. Forget it for 3-4 years and drink it over the following 35-40 years."
- Item #: i_214430Bottle Size: 750mlVinous Media: 97ANTONIO GALLONI 97 POINTS - "The 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon Hershey Vineyard is dense, powerful and very much closed in on itself, with less of the aromatic intensity and power it has shown in the past. There is good depth and density in the glass, but I suspect the wine is simply going through a subdued phase given how the 2014 has shown in the past and how magnificent the other 2014s are today."
- Item #: i_200380Bottle Size: 750mlVinous Media: 91The David Arthur Estate is located high on Pritchard Hill, on the eastern side of the Napa Valley. The rough mountain terrain and rocky red soils provide ideal growing conditions for wine grapes such as Cabernet Sauvignon. In 1978, Donald Long and his 28 year old son David began the epic job of building roads, clearing land and finally planting wine grapes. Although David lacked a formal viticultural education, he learned hands-on by working in the vineyards and cellars of local wineries such as the Chappellet and Joseph Phelps. The first vintage of Chardonnay was harvested in 1985, followed by Cabernet Sauvignon in the nineties. As his experience and knowledge of the land grew, David learned the ability of these hills to grow the very finest wine grapes. Today, with the help of a highly insightful team, David Arthur continues to cultivate rich concentrated wine grapes that in turn help them craft distinctive and memorable wines.
Meritaggio is the brainchild of the Long brothers. Wanting to fulfill his desire of producing a fine Meritage blend, David set out to find clones of the five classic Bordeaux varietals. On his travels, he came across Sangiovese, which stole the spotlight from any Malbec he had ever tasted. Bob had the brilliance to name the wine "Meritaggio" in honor of Sangiovese's Italian Heritage.
ANTONIO GALLONI 91 POINTS - "Winemaker Nile Zacherle has done a fabulous job with the 2014s at David Arthur. The wines showed just as well, or better, than they did last year."
"The 2014 Meritaggio Estate is a very beautiful, classy wine. Bright, focused and nuanced, the 2014 offers striking aromatics and finely sculpted fruit, all in a refreshing, mid-weight style that will drink well early. Red stone fruit and sweet floral notes are pushed forward in this attractive mid-weight wine. The 2014 has a bit less Sangiovese than in the past."
- Item #: i_200452Bottle Size: 750mlVinous Media: 94ANTONIO GALLONI 94 POINTS - "Winemaker Nile Zacherle crafts some of the most elegant, polished Cabernets readers will taste on Pritchard Hill. As good as the wines are, they would almost certainly be even better if the estate took a few more risks. Today, the wines are almost always outstanding, but there may be an even higher level of quality that can be achieved here."
ROBERT PARKER 95 POINTS - "The 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon Elevation 1147 has the darker, more spiced profile found in the Three Acre with the lift and freshness of the Old Vine. All the elements come together nicely in this super-expressive Pritchard Hill Cabernet Sauvignon. The 2015 is wonderfully dense and lush, and yet retains quite a bit of freshness."
- Item #: i_276347Bottle Size: 750MLThe vineyards of Calistoga, located in the northern Napa Valley, are prized for helping to produce wine grapes of extraordinary flavors, complexity and quality. Frank Family Vineyards are located in this region on the original site of the historic Larkmead Winery and owned by wine legend Hans Kornell. Rich Frank and his family farm this piece of land with great fervor, and with the help of their winemaker Todd Graff, the wines from Frank Family Vineyards have become a "go to" at several of the top restaurants, hotels and retailers.
Now why is that? It's easy; Frank Family produces wine that they like to drink and they don’t charge the proverbial arm-and-a-leg like some others tend to do. What you get here exceeds what you pay! In addition to their Calistoga site, they have acquired a few other vineyards in other Napa Valley regions (such as Rutherford and Carneros) that they farm with the same intensity as their Calistoga vineyard.
Deriving from stellar vineyard sites, this beautiful wine exhibits the Rutherford appellation's signature earthy tone. Fresh, with characteristics of cassis, red currant and mocha, the 2017 is also dusty and mineral at its core. Full bodied and well structured, it shows an underlying softness and finds plenty of length and grace.
- Item #: i_233850Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 90Vinous Media: 91ANTONIO GALLONI 91 POINTS - "Keenan's 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley) is powerful and a bit rough around the edges although it is certainly not lacking in character. Dark red cherry, savory herb, earthiness, tobacco and cedar add to the wine's somewhat rustic personality, and yet there is more than enough depth in the fruit to balance things out. Medium to full in body, but very much classically built the 2016 has so much to offer, especially for readers who can look past a few small blemishes."
ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 90 POINTS - "The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon is deep garnet-purple colored with a plums, cassis and baked berries nose with violets, cedar, cigars and earth. The medium to full-bodied mouth is firm and grainy with decent concentration and an earthy finish."
- Item #: i_234000Bottle Size: 750MLVinous Media: 97This 12-acre vineyard and winery is located in a small, yet highly-envied area in Napa Valley called Pickett Road. The residents wineries of the area include Kenefick Ranch, Hundred Acre, and Eisele...so you get the kind of grapes are grown here! Winemaker Rebecca George does an amazing job on this project.
ANTONIO GALLONI 97 POINTS - "Proprietor Kelly Fleming has put together an all star team that also includes vineyard manager Mike Wolf and consulting winemaker Francoise Peschon, which is about as good as it gets. That commitment to quality comes through in the wines. Readers who have not yet tasted the Kelly Fleming wines owe it to themselves to do it. This Calistoga vineyard at the end of Pickett Road and near Kenefick Ranch, Eisele Vineyard and Hundred Acre's Few and Far Between, has produced a positively stellar set of wines over the last few vintages."
"Fleming's 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon is powerful and dense, with tons of explosive energy driving the red cherry, plum, cedar, licorice and tobacco flavors. A brooding wine today, the 2015 has really shut down since I last tasted it, which is probably a very good thing for its long-term prospects. Pomegranate, blood orange, menthol, spice and new leather build into the potent finish. The 2015 is a total stunner. That's all there is to it."
- Item #: i_235900Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 93-95ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 93-95 POINTS - "A barrel sample, the 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon features a deep garnet-purple, singing on the nose of freshly crushed black cherries, black berry pie and warm plums over a core of cassis and pencil lead plus nuances of violets, cinnamon stick and underbrush. Medium to full-bodied, the palate delivers mouth-coating, crunchy black fruit with a firm backbone of ripe, grainy tannins and just enough freshness, finishing long and spicy."
- Item #: i_230480Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 93Vinous Media: 93ANTONIO GALLONI 93 POINTS - "The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley) is just as delicious from bottle as it was from barrel. Deep, fleshy and super-expressive the 2016 has a lot to offer. Inky blue/purplish berry fruit, lavender, mint and spice notes all grace this alluring Napa Valley Cabernet from Paul Hobbs."
ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 93 POINTS - Deep garnet-purple colored, the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon reveals bombastic blackberry pie and blueberry compote notes with underlying cassis, dried herbs and unsmoked cigars scents plus a waft of pencil shavings. Full-bodied and jam-packed with black fruits and earthy layers, it has a solid, grainy frame and a long finish with a lively herbal lift. 6,576 cases produced.
- Item #: i_253050Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 93Vinous Media: 91Jeb Dunnuck: 92About 20 years ago, David Ramey was part of a select group of winemakers who became tired of "laboratory" or "squeaky clean" wines devoid of character. He wanted to bring terroir back into wines from California, and his success was the benefit of the consumer! David Ramey became known throughout the wine world as a winemaker associated with stellar quality, and he brought his expertise to brands such as Chalk Hill, Matanzas Creek, Dominus Estate, Rudd Estate, as well as his own brand. While the Ramey Chardonnays have been on the "center stage" for a few years, this release shows that his Cabernets can hang with some of the best in the Napa Valley...and at a MUCH lower price than others that sell for exponentially more!
ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 93 POINTS - "The 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon is a blend of 78% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12% Merlot, 7% Malbec and 3% Petit Verdot. Medium to deep ruby, it has an incredible nose of licorice, dried flowers and mint chocolate over black berries and black cherries, cedar shavings and pencil lead, plus spicy clove and star anise touches. Medium to full-bodied, it floods the mouth with plush flavor layers wrapped in chocolate-textured, pixelated tannins and great freshness to counter, finishing long and luscious. 7,177 cases produced."
JEB DUNNUCK 93 POINTS - "The 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon comes from a hot, sunny vintage yet has a pure, classy character. Notes of creme de cassis, tobacco, leafy herbs, and spring flowers are just some of the aromatics and it's medium-bodied, elegant, and incredibly polished on the palate. It's another wine from Ramey that's nicely balanced, with terrific purity and loads of class."
ANTONIO GALLONI 93 POINTS - "David Ramey's 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley) is racy and inviting, with all of its natural exuberance on display. Another year in bottle has really helped the 2015 come together. Pretty red fruit and floral notes add a kick of brightness to balance the natural exuberance of the growing season."
- Item #: i_242830Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 96+Vinous Media: 96+Jeb Dunnuck: 95ANTONIO GALLONI 96+ POINTS - "Mondavi's Cabernet Sauvignon The Reserve To Kalon Vineyard is fabulous. Rich, powerful and voluptuous, the 2015 oozes with class from the very first taste. The flavors are deep, dark and boldly sketched in this sumptuous, beautifully resonant Cabernet. The tannins will need time to soften, but I can't imagine readers opening bottles anytime soon. The 2015 Reserve is one of the very finest wines I have tasted from Robert Mondavi Winery."
ROBERT PARKER 96+ POINTS - "Composed of 92% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Merlot, 2% Petit Verdot and 2% Cabernet Franc, the 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon To Kalon Reserve features a deep garnet-purple color and wonderfully expressive nose of creme de cassis, preserved plums and black forest cake with hints of cigar boxes, aniseed, dark chocolate and forest floor. Full-bodied, rich and concentrated in the mouth, the ripe, opulent black fruit is well supported by velvety tannins and plenty of freshness, finishing long and spicy."
JEB DUNNUCK 95 POINTS - "A blend of 92% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Merlot, 2% Petite Verdot, and 2% Cabernet Franc, the 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon The Reserve To Kalon Vineyard is about as perfumed, upfront and sexy as they come. Sporting a ruby/plum color and a terrific bouquet of black raspberries, cedary spice, toasty oak, flowers and incense, it hits the palate with loads of sweet fruit, an undeniable opulence, ripe tannin and a great finish. It's an approachable 2015 that's going to evolve gracefully for another two decades."
- Item #: i_270270Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 94Vinous Media: 94ANTONIO GALLONI 94 POINTS - "These 2015s from Tor Kenward and his longtime winemaker, Jeff Ames, are seriously impressive, but the 2016s I tasted from barrel may turn out to be even better. Over the last few years, Kenward and Ames have stepped up their game meaningfully, and it shows."
"Tor's 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon Herb Lamb Vineyard is terrific. In a vintage in which so many wines are monolithic, the Herb Lamb possesses captivating aromatics and silky tannins that seem to bring out the best this site has to offer. Super-ripe red cherry, raspberry, hard candy and wild flowers give the 2015 a level of sensual exoticism that is impossible to miss. There is so much to like. Tor Kenward and winemaker Jeff Ames have done a superb job in bringing out the essential signatures that make Herb Lamb one of the most intriguing sites in Napa Valley."
ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 94 POINTS - "The Herb Lamb Vineyard is below the Howell Mountain appellation line yet above the St. Helena appellation line. The 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon Herb Lamb Vineyard was fermented in a single closed-top tank for about 14 days. The goal for this wine was not maximum extraction but rather to best express the singular profile of this historic vineyard. It saw no more than two pump-overs a day and had a maximum fermentation temperature of 86 degrees Fahrenheit. Following completion of the primary fermentation, the wine was put down to new Taransaud barrels, where it stayed for 18 months until being bottled unfined and unfiltered. It opens with creme de cassis, black cherry pie, plums and cedar with touches of tobacco, bay leaves and earth. The palate is full-bodied, velvety, lively, expressive and earthy with an herbal lift to the finish. 225 cases produced."
- Item #: i_287800Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 93Vinous Media: 93ANTONIO GALLONI 93 POINTS - "These are the first wines from Christian Moueix's property in Oakville. In 2008 Moueix bought the Schmidt Ranch, which lies on the southeastern edge of Oakville, next to Vine Hill Ranch and Missouri Hopper. From what I have gathered, the Schmidt Ranch was once considered part of the Missouri Hopper vineyard. More recently, the fruit had gone to Swanson. The Ulysses Cabernet Sauvignon is made at Dominus (there is no winery on the property) by Tod Mostero and the team at Dominus. The wines I have tasted so far reveal the distinctly ferrous, savory and tobacco notes that are typical of this sector of Napa Valley, with less of an emphasis on fruit. Compared to Dominus, Ulysses is a warmer site, so the tannins here tend to be a bit creamier than those at Dominus. These three wines certainly point to a very bright future."
"The 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon is the first commercial release from Christian Moueix's Oakville property. Sensual and alluring, yet with striking depth, the 2012 is full of sweet red cherry, raspberry jam, wild flowers, all pushed forward in a sexy, layered Cabernet Sauvignon that delivers terrific depth for a wine from this generally uneven vintage. Sweet floral and spiced notes add lift on the finish. I imagine the 2012 will reward readers with a good two decades of fine drinking."
ROBERT PARKER 93 POINTS - "I had the privilege to taste this new estate vineyard wine from Christian Moueix several months before the 2012 would be released. Moueix purchased the old Schmidt Ranch, which is just to the north of his iconic Napanook vineyard. The AVA is different, as he is on the southern border of the Oakville appellation. This is pure valley floor soil with great drainage, just to the south of Martha's Vineyard and the famous To Kalon of both Mondavi and Andy Beckstoffer. Several vintages have been made, but not yet released. The first official release is the 2012. This is a completely different style of wine than those produced at Dominus. While the property is much smaller (40 acres vs. the very large Napanook vineyard), a similar élevage is employed, with 40% to 50% new French oak, and bottling after the wine spends 20 months in wood. Moueix told me that the site, even though it is so close to Napanook, is warmer in the summer by several degrees and colder in the winter, Additionally, the soils are deeper. What Moueix has done is produce a wine that is in complete contrast to Dominus. The wines of Dominus are known for their silky complexity, and even though there is virtually no Merlot in any of the top vintages, they always have an almost Pomerol-like lushness and opulence. Ulysses, on the other hand, is a Napa version of a first or second growth Pauillac. The crème de cassis, the licorice, the purity and the graphite notes are present in all three of these vintages, just in varying degrees."
"The 2012 Ulysses (800 cases) is 95% Cabernet Sauvignon and the rest other Bordeaux varietals. A structured, dense purple wine that displays plenty of cedar wood, crème de cassis, licorice and graphite, the wine is full-bodied, rich, backward and dense, but beautifully pure fruit and an almost Pontet-Canet-like purity and density are hallmarks of this brilliant wine. Forget it for 4-5 years and drink it over the following 20-25."
- Item #: i_287830Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 96Vinous Media: 95ROBERT PARKER 96 POINTS - "I had the privilege to taste this new estate vineyard wine from Christian Moueix several months before the 2012 would be released. Moueix purchased the old Schmidt Ranch, which is just to the north of his iconic Napanook vineyard. The AVA is different, as he is on the southern border of the Oakville appellation. This is pure valley floor soil with great drainage, just to the south of Martha's Vineyard and the famous To Kalon of both Mondavi and Andy Beckstoffer. Several vintages have been made, but not yet released. The first official release is the 2012. This is a completely different style of wine than those produced at Dominus. While the property is much smaller (40 acres vs. the very large Napanook vineyard), a similar elevage is employed, with 40% to 50% new French oak, and bottling after the wine spends 20 months in wood. Moueix told me that the site, even though it is so close to Napanook, is warmer in the summer by several degrees and colder in the winter, Additionally, the soils are deeper. What Moueix has done is produce a wine that is in complete contrast to Dominus. The wines of Dominus are known for their silky complexity, and even though there is virtually no Merlot in any of the top vintages, they always have an almost Pomerol-like lushness and opulence. Ulysses, on the other hand, is a Napa version of a first or second growth Pauillac. The crème de cassis, the licorice, the purity and the graphite notes are present in all three of these vintages, just in varying degrees."
"The 2013 Ulysses is absolutely mind-boggling, as so many wines from this vintage are. Gorgeous blueberry and blackberry fruit, along with the telltale cassis and floral notes, jump from the glass. Again, this is Pauillac-like, with some cedar wood and subtle barrique smells. Again produced nearly all from Cabernet Sauvignon, the wine is full-bodied, powerful, rich and long, with slightly sweeter tannins than the 2012. Production in 2013 was 960 cases, and Moueix told me that the entire growing season averaged about two and half weeks ahead of schedule from bloom break to harvest. This is a prodigious effort and will certainly stand as the great Ulysses of the first trio to be released. I suspect it will be drinkable in 3-4 years and keep for 30 or more, given the Moueix track record."
ANTONIO GALLONI 95+ POINTS - "These are the first wines from Christian Moueix's property in Oakville. In 2008 Moueix bought the Schmidt Ranch, which lies on the southeastern edge of Oakville, next to Vine Hill Ranch and Missouri Hopper. From what I have gathered, the Schmidt Ranch was once considered part of the Missouri Hopper vineyard. More recently, the fruit had gone to Swanson. The Ulysses Cabernet Sauvignon is made at Dominus (there is no winery on the property) by Tod Mostero and the team at Dominus. The wines I have tasted so far reveal the distinctly ferrous, savory and tobacco notes that are typical of this sector of Napa Valley, with less of an emphasis on fruit. Compared to Dominus, Ulysses is a warmer site, so the tannins here tend to be a bit creamier than those at Dominus. These three wines certainly point to a very bright future."
"Gravel, smoke, graphite, savory herbs, tobacco and iron are some of the signatures in the 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon. A typical wine from the eastern sector of Oakville on the border with Yountville, the 2013 is loaded with feral, savory notes, while the expression of blue/blackish fruit lies a bit more in the background. In 2013, the main signature is an expression of structure that is both vertical but also incredibly insistent through to the finish. In other words, this is a super-classic 2013 built for the cellar."