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California Wines

California Wines

California Wines

California Wines

With a history of wine production that dates back to the 18th century, California currently sits as one of the world’s most prolific and reputable wine regions. With an area as vast as California, you can expect a colorful collage of terroir profiles, a series of microclimates, and micro-environments that give the wine a unique, memorable appeal. The region’s produce is far from homogenized in that sense, and it would take you countless hours to sample all of it.

While the region boasts scars from the Prohibition era, it went through what can only be described as a viticultural Renaissance sometime after the 1960s. At that point, California went from a port-style, sweet wine region to a versatile and compelling competitor on the world market. Today, no matter which way your taste in wine leans, you can find a new favorite producer among California’s most talented.

Notable sub-regions include legendary names like Napa Valley and Sonoma County, places that any wine lover worth their salt would die to visit. California’s quintessential warm climate allows for incredibly ripe fruit expressions, a style that provides a stark contrast to Old World-inspired, earthy classics. Even where inspiration was clearly taken from staple French appellations, Californian winemakers put their own unique spin on the wine, making it feel like a unique, standalone piece, rather than a derivative.

A New World region rises to join its viticultural forebears. Its meteoric rise to fame has been nothing short of stunning, and today California can compete with the world’s most prominent wine regions.

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2000 abreu cabernet sauvignon thorevilos California Red

The first release from the 20-acre Thorevilos Vineyard (co-owned by David Abreu and Ric Forman) is the 2000 Cabernet Sauvignon Thorevilos, a blend of 88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Cabernet Franc, and 2% Petit Verdot. It is a dense, sweet, black currant-flavored effort with hints of scorched earth, cedar, and flowers in the background. Fruit-driven (mostly blue and black fruits), with a Pomerol-like succulence/lushness, it should drink well young, and evolve for 15+ years.Napa Valley’s most gifted vineyard manager, and certainly a must-hire for those looking to develop great vineyards and produce top quality wines, David Abreu continues to fine tune his own estate, producing some of the most prodigious Cabernet Sauvignons in the world.Robert Parker | 92 RP

92
RP
As low as $299.00
2002 Spottswoode Cabernet Sauvignon

I was also able to taste a barrel sample of the 2022 Cabernet Sauvignon, and it’s clearly one of the deeper hued 2022s I was able to taste for this report. Darker currants, hints of cassis, scorched earth, and tobacco all emerge on the nose, and it’s medium to full-bodied, has a classic, elegant Spottswood texture, building tannins, and outstanding length.Jeb Dunnuck | 94-96 JDThe 2022 Cabernet Sauvignon, tasted as a barrel sample, is deep purple-black in color. Intense scents of plum preserves, blueberry pie, and creme de cassis give way to wafts of dried roses, star anise, and powdered cinnamon. The medium-bodied palate is velvety and lively, with bags of juicy black and blue fruit preserves leading to a long and spicy finish on this impressive wine.The Wine Independent | 94-96+ TWIDark, layered and imposing, the 2022 Cabernet Sauvignon is a promising wine for the year. Dark red and purplish fruit, spice and rose petals open gradually, wrapped together by firm, large-grained tannins for this site. This core blend represents about 40% of the eventual final blend.Vinous Media | 92-95 VM

99
JD
As low as $579.00
2007 Schrader CCS Cabernet Sauvignon Beckstoffer Vyd

Deep garnet-purple in color, the 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon CCS is profoundly scented of baked plums, cherry tart and warm wild blueberries with touches of cinnamon stick, cloves, star anise and fertile loam plus an earthy waft of moss-covered tree bark. The palate is a hedonist’s fruit bowl of red, black and blue berry preserves layers in a full-bodied, decadently plush package, with an uplifting line of freshness to balance and an epically long finish. Pure sex in a glass!Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 100 RPPacks a wallop, with a broad, deep range of flavors, from exotic, spicy, vanilla- and mocha-accented oak to a dense, vibrant core of wild berry and blackberry that flows smoothly, gaining traction and tannic grip on the finish.—Blind 1997/2007 California Cabernet retrospective (January 2017). Drink now through 2026. 250 cases made.Wine Spectator | 95 WS

100
RP
As low as $1,425.00
2008 Hundred Acre Cabernet Sauvignon Precious

The 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon Precious has a medium garnet color and gives up bold, gregarious baked plums, warm cassis and black cherries on the nose with wafts of licorice and tilled soil. The palate is full-bodied, very firm, grainy and fresh, finishing long and earthy.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 94 RPThe 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon Precious is endowed with tons of sheer richness, depth and concentration. Black cherries, mocha, espresso, new leather and grilled herbs are some of the aromas and flavors that power through to the finish. The 2008 is all about intensity. It is a totally irresistible wine, even if the alcohol comes through from time to time.Vinous Media | 93 VM

94
RP
As low as $495.00
2009 hundred acre vyd cabernet sauv kayli morgan California Red

Medium to deep garnet colored, the 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon Kayli Morgan Vineyard gives up bold blackcurrant cordial, blackberry compote and raspberry pie scents with hints of chocolate-covered cherries, roses and lilacs plus hints of charcuterie and yeast extract. Medium to full-bodied, the palate is wonderfully elegant, with wonderful vivacity and perfume and a satiny texture with a very long finish.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 96 RPPure sensuality in the glass, the 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon Kayli Morgan Vineyard is going to be nearly impossible to resist in its youth. At the same time, the Kayli Morgan has a track record of developing beautifully in bottle, and I imagine that is exactly what will happen here. Cedar, spice box, cassis and plums burst from the glass in this impressive, layered wine. A hint of mocha develops later, but it is pretty clear the 2009 is playing its cards close to the vest. There is enough inner tension to make me think the 2009 has a very bright future. Jayson Woodbridge describes 2009 as a year with a tiny crop and equally small berries. It is also the year Woodbridge brought in a helicopter to dry out the fruit after the mid-October typhoon dropped a huge amount of rain on Napa Valley.Antonio Galloni | 95+ AGPure and understated, with a charming mix of elegant ripe black cherry and plum, subtle fresh earth, tobacco and cedar, ending with fleshy, fine-grained tannins. Less opulent than prior vintages. Drink now through 2024. 600 cases made.Wine Spectator | 91 WS

96
RP
As low as $515.00
2011 Hundred Acre Cabernet Sauvignon Ark Vineyard

Medium garnet colored, the 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon Ark Vineyard leaps from the glass with red roses, raspberry leaves and kirsch with a cassis and blackberry core plus hints of anise, Indian spices and florals. The palate is full-bodied with plenty of perfumed fruit and a satiny texture, finishing with incredible energy.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 94 RP

94
RP
As low as $495.00
2012 larkmead cabernet sauvignon solari California Red

The 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon Solari (100% Cabernet Sauvignon aged 20 months in 70% new French oak) is even better than I thought last year. This spectacular wine boasts notes of white chocolate, hot gravel, crème de cassis, blackberries, licorice and forest floor. A subtle smoky barbecue character is noticeable in the background. This is a thrilling, full-bodied, majestic Cabernet Sauvignon to drink over the next 25-30 years, although its tannic structure suggests cellaring it for 2-5 years will be beneficial.Robert Parker | 99 RPThe 2012 Solari is a stunning wine based on 100% Cabernet Sauvignon that spent 20 months in 70% new French oak. As with most 2012s, it’s drinking brilliantly today and sports a youthful ruby/purple hue as well as a monster bouquet of crème de cassis, graphite, dried earth, licorice, and Asian spices. It’s rich and powerful, with plenty of underling structure, yet it stays weightless as well as seamless on the palate, with flawless balance. This is a brilliant, heavenly Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon that will continue showing well for another two decades or more.Jeb Dunnuck | 99 JDA broad, rich, expansive expression of dark berry, currant, espresso and mocha, this hits all the right notes, with touches of savory herb and tobacco leaf. Most impressive on the lingering finish, where the flavors run deep. Drink now through 2030. 1,090 cases made.Wine Spectator | 95 WSA wine with sliced mushroom, bark and spice plus berry and dark chocolate. Full body with forest flower, bramble, and light earth. Powerful and rich. A wonderful expression of cabernet sauvignon from here. Pure cab. Available in November. Give it two or three years to soften. Try in 2017.James Suckling | 95 JSGraphite, smoke, licorice, incense, game and black fruit race across the palate in the 2012 Solari. This is an especially explosive, structured wine for the vintage, with superb balance and the density to support years of exceptional drinking. Black cherries, plums, game and tobacco reappear on the huge finish. This is a rare 2012 that demands patience.Antonio Galloni | 94+ AG

99
JD
As low as $305.00
2013 Shafer Cabernet Sauvignon Hillside Select

Wonderful floral aromas with perfumed roses plus hints of blackcurrants and spearmint. Full-bodied and so powerful and muscular but always showing the brightness and beauty of fruit. Winemakers say this reminds them of the 1978, their first year. It certainly has the structure — "those tannins" as they put it. Finish is so impressive with tar, iron and spices. Available in September 2017. Try in 2023.James Suckling | 99 JSAll Cabernet aged 32 months in new French oak, the flagship 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Hillside Select is a beauty that offers just about everything you could want out of wine. Blackcurrants, scorched earth, smoky oak and spice aromatics all give way to a full-bodied, concentrated, structured 2013 that has incredible fruit intensity, yet never seems heavy, over the top, or cumbersome in any way. It needs 4-5 years of cellaring and is going to keep for two to three decades.Jeb Dunnuck | 98 JDThe 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Hillside Select will probably hit the magic three-digit score, but it is a more backward style of wine, although probably even more concentrated than the 2012, and that’s saying something. Fabulous potential of 30-50 years is evident in this profound bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon that is inky blue/black to the rim and offers up notes of charcoal embers, scorched earth, blackberries, cassis, blueberries, a hint of coffee, and background barrique smells. Massively concentrated but incredibly elegant and poised, this is a wine of great energy and vibrancy. It is fabulously deep, built like a skyscraper, and set for an incredibly long life. Try not to consume a bottle for at least another 4-5 years and then watch the magic unfold.Robert Parker | 98 RPAmong the Napa Valley's most crowning achievements in Cabernet, this vintage of Hillside Select is stunning, bright and beguiling in every way. Intensely layered, its interwoven flavors burst in black licorice, dark chocolate, pipe tobacco, gun smoke and garrigue. Spicy oak adds to the power and weight. Drinkable now, it will show even greater finesse in time; enjoy best 2023–2033 and possibly beyond.Wine Enthusiast | 98 WEJust bottled a few months before this tasting, the 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Hillside Select is shaping up to be a jewel of a wine. Readers will have to be patient with this big, tannic Cabernet Sauvignon. The 2013 doesn't have the sensuality of the 2012 nor the silkiness of the 2011. Instead, the 2013 is a dense, vertical wine that needs at least a few years of cellaring. This is an intensely savory, mineral driven vintage for Shafer's flagship Cabernet Sauvignon.Vinous Media | 97 VMGraceful and supple, rich and loamy, tilted toward the savory, herbal side of Cabernet, with modest cherry and currant notes. Displays deft balance and hints of anise and underbrush. Complex throughout. Drink now through 2030. 2,400 cases made.Wine Spectator | 94 WS

98+
RP
As low as $379.00
2015 burgess cellars cabernet sauvignon hillside vineyards California Red

The 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley) is absolutely delicious. Ripe, radiant and seductive, the 2015 is going to be nearly impossible to resist young. Even so, there is plenty of structural underpinning beneath all of the fruit. Sweet floral notes develop in the glass, adding lift, but above all else, the 2015 is a wine of textural voluptuousness, all in a silky, mid-weight style that is hugely appealing.Antonio Galloni | 93 AG

93
VM
As low as $49.95
2015 newton cabernet sauvignon mount veeder California Red

A classic, herb-tinged Cabernet nose. Discreet currant notes are backed up by savoury-earthy tones. Rich and juicy on the palate but balanced by well-built and muscular tannins. Showy, with a mountain edge.Decanter | 96 DECThis is a big and rich cab but shows the coolness of the Mt. Veeder area with fresh mushroom, tobacco and currant character. Full-bodied, tight and focused. Long and flavorful finish. The balance of tannin and fruit is right on. Drink in 2020.James Suckling | 96 JSThe 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon Mount Veeder Single Vineyard is also beautiful, and probably my favorite in the lineup. Crème de cassis, black cherries, violets, incense, and spring flower notes all emerge from this medium to full-bodied, beautifully complete, layered 2015 that has bright acidity, present, firm tannin, impeccable balance and a great finish. Hide bottles for 4-5 years and drink over the following 15+.Jeb Dunnuck | 95 JDThe deep garnet-purple colored 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon Mt. Veeder Single Vineyard opens with warm cassis, blueberry compote and black forest cake notes with hints of spice box and cigars. Medium-bodied with good intensity, it has just enough fruit and firm tannins, and the finish is long and savory.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 94+ RPDusty leather and an Old World savory and feral nose, are accented by dried herb and pyrazine in this sinewy red. Pencil shavings, cedar and black olive stay on the classic theme, with plush, expansive tannins gripping the palate with finesse.Wine Enthusiast | 93 WE

94+
RP
As low as $189.00
2016 dana estates cabernet sauvignon lotus vyd California Red

With more minerality as well as a bloody, iron character, the perfect 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Lotus Vineyard is 97% Cabernet Sauvignon and 3% Petit Verdot that saw 27 months in new French oak barrels. Incredible notes of blackcurrants, graphite, tobacco, Asian spices, and dried herbs all emerge from this full-bodied, ultra-pure, layered, and just incredible wine that tops out my scale. Coming from a vineyard at the base of Howell Mountain and aged in 90% new French oak, it has the class to offer pleasure even today yet is going to benefit from 7-8 years of bottle age and keep for 3-4 decades. It’s one of the greatest young Cabernets I’ve ever tasted.Jeb Dunnuck | 100 JDThe 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Lotus Vineyard is the most powerful and backward of the three single-vineyard Cabernets at Dana. Brisk and finely cut, the 2016 captures a stunning interplay of freshness, structure and vibrancy. Readers will have to be patient, as the 2016 is going to need a number of years to be at its very best. Even in the early going, though, it is pretty memorable. Gravel, sage, menthol, crushed flowers and white pepper add aromatic nuance to a brooding, tannic Cabernet Sauvignon built for the cellar.Vinous Media | 100 VMThe 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Lotus Vineyard is made up of 97% Cabernet Sauvignon (clones 4 and 15) and 3% Petit Verdot. It fermented 46% in oak tanks, 38% in concrete and 16% in barrels. It was on the skins for 28 to 43 days and aged in French oak barrels for 27 months. Deep garnet-purple in color, it is a little shy to begin, before opening up with provocative lilacs, cinnamon stick, cloves and underbrush over a core of blackcurrant cordial, preserved plums and Black Forest cake plus a waft of cast-iron pan. Full-bodied, the palate is an exercise in grace, with wonderfully harmonious perfumed black fruit framed by very fine-grained tannins and bags of freshness, finishing very long.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 99 RPThis is a very solid red showing an impressive, vertical line of tannins and acidity with blackberry and blueberry character. Full body, a cylinder of fruit and chewy yet polished tannins. Extremely persistent. Needs three or four years to come together. Try after 2022.James Suckling | 98 JS

100
JD
As low as $645.00
2016 fisher cabernet sauvignon mountain estate vineyard California Red

The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Mountain Estate Vineyard (84% Cabernet Sauvignon and the balance Merlot and Petit Verdot) spent 22 months in 80% new French oak. It has a more mineral-laced style as well as dark currants and cassis-like fruits, notes of smoked herbs and graphite, full body, building tannins, and a great finish. There’s a touch of this liqueur of rock like minerality that comes out with air and it’s a powerful, structured wine that reminds me of what Leoville Las Cases would make from Napa. Hide bottle for 4-5 years and drink it over the coming two decades or more.Jeb Dunnuck | 96+ JDThe 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Mountain Estate Vineyard is a dark, brooding wine. A terrific example of Sonoma Cabernet, the 2016 possesses superb textural richness and intensity to match its dark, somber profile. An infusion of inky dark fruit, gravel, smoke, iron, game, dark spice, leather and licorice runs through this super expressive, rugged Cabernet Sauvignon from the Fisher family’s Spring Mountain estate.Antonio Galloni | 94 AGA tight, chewy red with blackberry and dark-chocolate aromas and flavors. Full-bodied, layered and rich. Flavorful finish. Shows mountain firmness. Drink in 2022 and onwards.James Suckling | 94 JSDeep ruby-purple, the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Mountain Estate Vineyard opens with gregarious crème de cassis, chocolate-covered cherries, graphite, leather and spice box with notes of thyme, turned earth and eucalyptus. Medium to full-bodied, it floods the mouth with intense, youthfully wound fruit, framed by grainy tannins and great freshness, finishing very long. This is vibrant and intense and will require another 3-5 years of bottle age. 952 cases produced.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 93+ RP

96+
JD
As low as $87.99
2016 vinehouse napa valley cabernet sauvignon howell mountain California Red

The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain is plush and super-expressive right out of the gate. Inky dark fruit, gravel, spice and juniper berries. There is a ton of character here. Black cherry, game, smoke, licorice, tobacco and incense all build in a potent, savory Cabernet that delivers the goods. This is one of the most distinctive Howell Mountain Cabernet wines I have tasted in some time.Antonio Galloni | 94 AG

94
VM
As low as $74.99
2016 fisher vineyards cabernet sauvignon coach insignia California Red

The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Coach Insignia is just as impressive today as it was from barrel last year. Dark, dense and explosive, the 2016 is a wine of real personality. A rush of black cherry, plum, chocolate, sage and licorice makes a strong opening statement, but there is plenty of underlying structure to back things up as well. Even with all of its obvious power and structure, the 2016 remains finessed and understated. I can’t wait to see how it ages.Antonio Galloni | 95+ AGTight and polished with firm and creamy tannins. Hints of dark chocolate to the currant and berry character. Medium to full body. Fresh, tight finish. A wine that will improve beautifully with age, but delicious and fresh now. Drink or hold.James Suckling | 94 JSThe 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Coach Insignia takes things up a notch and offers lots of currants, crème de cassis, tobacco, chocolate and earthy notes in a full-bodied, rounded, pure, and elegant package. It’s impeccably balanced, has beautiful purity, and a great finish. There’s enough structure here to warrant a year or three of bottle age and it will keep for 15-20 years. The blend is 92% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Petit Verdot, 1.5% Cabernet Franc, and 1.5% Merlot, all aged 22 months in 92% new French oak. (Drink between 2021-2041)Jeb Dunnuck | 93 JD

95
VM
As low as $109.00
2016 inglenook cabernet sauvignon rubicon California Red

This is a powerful and structured red with full body, focused and polished tannins and a long and flavorful finish. It’s very close to the great 2013. A blend of 93 per cent cabernet sauvignon and seven per cent cabernet franc. Needs three or four years to come around.James Suckling | 97 JSThe 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Rubicon is powerful, dark and unctuous, while retaining a super-classic sense of structure. Black cherry, plum, chocolate, leather, spice and menthol infuse the 2016 with striking textural depth and sweetness.Antonio Galloni | 96 AGThe flagship 2016 Rubicon checks in as 93% Cabernet Sauvignon and 7% Cabernet Franc, and there are close to 4,000 cases produced. This deep purple-hued beauty boasts a stunning nose of blackcurrants, tobacco leaf, cedarwood, and lead pencil shavings as well as even a hint of iron. These carry to a full-bodied 2016 that has terrific dept of fruit, solid mid-palate concentration, building tannins, and a great finish. This is a classic, age-worthy Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon that will benefit from 7-8 years of bottle age and keep for 3 decades.Jeb Dunnuck | 96 JDBlended of 93% Cabernet Sauvignon and 7% Cabernet Franc, the deep garnet-purple colored 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Rubicon gives up bold notions of crushed red and black currants, wild blueberries and blackberry preserves with touches of violets, dark chocolate, cardamom and bay leaves plus a hint of unsmoked cigars. Medium to full-bodied, the palate reveals great elegance and depth, with a beautiful line of finely grained tannins and amazing freshness, finishing long and layered. 3,847 cases produced.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 95 RPIn 2010 there was a change of winemaker at Rubicon, and the new arrival was Philippe Bascaules from Château Margaux. He soon made changes that were, one assumes, aimed at bringing more elegance and less density to the wine. This is certainly apparent here - the nose is ripe and vibrant, with intense mint and blackberry aromas that display purity of fruit and well-judged oak. Suave and polished, it shows finer tannins than the 2006, and enough acidity to give punch and persistence. It has a drier finish than most Napa Cabernets, which often have a sweetness that may be derived from high alcohol. So, there’s a welcome austerity here and this will age well. Drinking Window 2020 - 2040.Decanter | 94 DECThis is an intriguingly feral, herbal and classically styled wine, dripping in sage, toasted oak and wrap-around tannin. Cranberry, clove and cassis form a tangle of nuanced, graceful flavor nestled within a core of impressive structure. This is one to put away for awhile; enjoy best 2026—2036.Wine Enthusiast | 93 WEWhen Philippe Bascaules arrived at Inglenook in 2011, the estate’s Cask Cabernet was defined by its red-fruit character while Rubicon was defined by black fruit. He preferred to focus on the wine’s texture. Now commuting between Rutherford and Château Margaux, where he had worked for two decades with Paul Pontallier, he has changed the viticultural practice at Inglenook. In 2016, Rubicon is neither red nor black—in fact, it’s more blueberry in flavor. But what sets it apart is the plump, polished, mineral texture. As a young wine, it’s shy, gentle, finely structured cabernet, with no rough edges. There’s a sense of certainty, however, that such a wine, from a team secure enough to present it without youthful fanfare, will evolve to express the detail and complexity of this vineyard, its track record proven for more than a century. It’s a different way to think about Napa Valley Cabernet.Wine & Spirits | 93 W&SA savory hint leads the way, followed quickly by ample red currant and blackberry fruit flavors. Tobacco and freshly plowed earth accents score the finish, where the savory element lingers. Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. Best from 2021 through 2030. 3,847 cases made.Wine Spectator | 92 WS

97
TWI
As low as $199.00
2017 dunn cabernet sauvignon howell mtn California Red

The 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain is sure to make Dunn fans happy. Powerful and ample, it marries the natural intensity of the year with the savoriness that makes Howell Mountain Cabernets so distinctive. Dark blue/purplish fruit, graphite, spice, leather, dried herbs and lavender imbue the 2017 with striking intensity and character. I can’t wait to see how it ages. The 2017 is a positively stunning edition of the Howell Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon.Antonio Galloni | 97 AGAlready more open than the 2018 Howell Mountain, the 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain boasts slightly piney, resinous herb notes—thyme and rosemary—along with classic cassis and blueberry fruit. Yes, there’s a cedary coat of oak, but the fruit comes through loud and clear, adding a rich, velvety textural component and mouthwatering berry flavors on the lingering finish.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 96+ RPFresh ripe cassis, blackberry and plum fruit flavors course through, carried by tar and apple wood notes that are well-embedded, giving this a muscular but sleek feel. Features a great tug of dark earth and licorice snap on the palate-staining finish.Wine Spectator | 95 WSFrom a challenging vintage due to heat spikes and devastating wildfires, the 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain nevertheless is a terrific wine. Giving up lots of darker currant and cassis fruits as well as scorched earth, graphite, and obvious minerality, it’s medium to full-bodied, has good overall balance, chalky, slightly drying tannins, and a good finish. It should evolve for another decade at least, but the tannins will need to be watched.Jeb Dunnuck | 92 JD

97
VM
As low as $169.00
2017 alea fina cabernet sauvignon California Red
As low as $99.00
2017 dalla valle cabernet sauvignon California Red

Moving to the 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon, this cuvée is too often underrated and I think it’s one of the most classy, balanced, high quality Cabernets coming from the valley. Deep purple-colored with beautiful blackcurrant fruits interwoven with lots of tobacco, crushed rocks, leafy herbs, and graphite, it hits the palate with full-bodied richness, ripe, present tannins, and stunning balance. It’s going to benefit from 4-5 years of bottle age and keep for 25 years or more.Jeb Dunnuck | 97 JDThe 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate is blended of 85% Cabernet Sauvignon and 15% Cabernet Franc, aged in barrel for 21 months in two-thirds new oak. It was bottled one week prior to this tasting. Deep garnet-purple colored, it leaps from the glass with bold, beautiful black fruits—blackcurrant pastilles, plum preserves and boysenberries—with hints of baker’s chocolate, yeast extract, tapenade and Indian spices plus a waft of forest floor. Full-bodied, rich and spicy in the mouth, it sports soft, plush, well-played tannins and just enough freshness, finishing long and fragrant.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 95 RPThe 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon captures all of the radiance of the year in its super-ripe fruit and racy contours. Medium in body yet extravagantly ripe, the 2017 is going to need at least a few years in bottle to shed some baby fat. A rush of dark cherry, plum, spice, lavender, licorice and menthol gives the 2017 much of its immediacy and overall appeal.Antonio Galloni | 94 AGVery pretty blueberries and chocolate with hints of spice. Medium body, creamy tannins and a savory finish. Shows poise and balance. Delicious now. Why wait on this? Drink or hold.James Suckling | 93 JSFleshy and forward at first, with delicious plum and blackberry compote flavors laced with dark licorice and roasted cedar notes. Fleshes out with some air in the glass, showing nice length, a well-buried iron note and latent grip for cellaring. Best from 2021 through 2032. 860 cases made.Wine Spectator | 92 WS

97
JD
As low as $235.00
2018 silver oak napa valley cabernet sauvignon California Red

The lovely ruby red colour is translucent, revealing a heady wine of blackberry, liquorice, vanillin, spicebush, and dried floral notes with savoury, toasty oak spices. This 2018 offers one of the more restrained and pretty bouquets of Silver Oak’s Napa Cabernet in my memory. Very elegant on the entry, revealing a medium-bodied red wine with lovely cranberry fruit, plums, and currants, with a real depth to those fruit qualities framed by sculpted tannins that affix themselves onto the palate before giving way and resolving. Cabernet Sauvignon-dominant with trace amounts of Petit Verdot and Malbec. Aged in 85% new American Oak from The Oak Cooperage in Higbee, Missouri, the Duncans have owned it outright since 2015. The other 15% are second-use American oak barrels. They’ve been using the same cooperage for decades. The barrels imbue the Silver Oak wines with a classic vanillin quality, a nuance they always want to retain, even as they experiment with various toasts to produce smoother tannins in the toasting process.Decanter | 95 DEC

95
DEC
As low as $149.00
2018 Silver Oak Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley

This structured and concentrated wine is spot on for the vintage. It’s very dense in color and aroma, saturated with ultra dark chocolate, graphite and blueberries on a firm texture of taut tannins that will need time to evolve. Aged in 85 to 90 percent new American oak barrels, the wine should be approachable by 2028 and best from 2033.James Suckling | 97 JSThe lovely ruby red colour is translucent, revealing a heady wine of blackberry, liquorice, vanillin, spicebush, and dried floral notes with savoury, toasty oak spices. This 2018 offers one of the more restrained and pretty bouquets of Silver Oak’s Napa Cabernet in my memory. Very elegant on the entry, revealing a medium-bodied red wine with lovely cranberry fruit, plums, and currants, with a real depth to those fruit qualities framed by sculpted tannins that affix themselves onto the palate before giving way and resolving. Cabernet Sauvignon-dominant with trace amounts of Petit Verdot and Malbec. Aged in 85% new American Oak from The Oak Cooperage in Higbee, Missouri, the Duncans have owned it outright since 2015. The other 15% are second-use American oak barrels. They’ve been using the same cooperage for decades. The barrels imbue the Silver Oak wines with a classic vanillin quality, a nuance they always want to retain, even as they experiment with various toasts to produce smoother tannins in the toasting process.Decanter | 95 DEC

As low as $365.00
2018 gandona cabernet sauvignon estate California Red

The 2018 Gandona is superb. Inky dark fruit, gravel, spice, chocolate, menthol and licorice infuse the 2018 with striking layers of complexity, all with firm mountain tannins that give the wine shape, energy and drive. The 2018 is a real powerhouse. I can’t remember tasting a wine from this property with so much structure and tannin. Readers should plan on giving the 2018 plenty of air. I found the 2018 really only blossomed a number of hours after opening.Vinous Media | 97 VMBased on 100% Cabernet Sauvignon that spent 21 months in 60% new French oak, the 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Gandona is a sexy, powerful red offering lots of chocolatey dark fruits, notes of scorched earth, tobacco, and graphite, full-bodied richness, and a layered, impressively textured mouthfeel. There are only 400 cases produced, but it’s well worth seeking out.Jeb Dunnuck | 96 JDThe 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate is made from 100% Cabernet Sauvignon, aged for 21 months in French oak, 60% new. Deep garnet-purple colored, it gives up gregarious notes of crushed blackberries, ripe black cherries and blackcurrant cordial with hints of mocha, bay leaves and black licorice plus a waft of cedar. Big, concentrated, full-bodied and jam-packed with black fruit flavors, it has a solid backbone of firm, grainy tannins and just enough freshness, finishing long and layered. 400 cases were made.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 95 RP

97
VM
As low as $269.00
2018 favia cabernet sauvignon California Red

Readers looking for a killer Cabernet that won’t break the bank should check out the 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Carbone from Favia. This dense purple-hued beauty boasts classic cassis and blueberry-like fruit intermixed with lots of tobacco, lead pencil shavings, violets, and spring flower nuances. These carry to a medium to full-bodied, beautifully balanced, elegant Cabernet with a great mid-palate and the class to evolve for 10-15 years. It’s well worth seeking out.Jeb Dunnuck | 94 JDThe 2018 Carbone Cabernet Sauvignon is a bright, effusive wine. Sweet red berry fruit, mocha and a whole range of floral/savory aromatics burst from the glass. Medium in body and inviting, the 2018 drinks well now, but it also has the vibrancy to develop nicely in bottle. Carbone is the second wine of Favia.Vinous Media | 92 VM

98
JD
As low as $199.00
2018 paul hobbs cabernet sauvignon beckstoffer las piedras vineyard California Red

Deep garnet-purple in color, the 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Beckstoffer Las Piedras Vineyard opens with provocative ferrous, crushed rocks and tar notes over a core of crème de cassis, redcurrant jelly and raspberry leaves with a hint of wild fungi. The medium to full-bodied palate is taut with tension and jam-packed with pure black and red fruits, supported by firm, grainy tannins, finishing with uplifting mineral sparks. This energetic beauty needs some time. Give it a good 4-5 years in bottle and drink it over the next 25 years+. 396 cases were made.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 98 RPThe 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Beckstoffer Las Piedras Vineyard is such a gorgeous and highly representative wine off this site. Crushed rocks, graphite, menthol, crème de cassis and spice are so typical of this site. At this stage, the Piedras does not have the sheer appeal or immediacy of the Crane, but then again, that is Piedras. All of this fruit is Clone 4, which in this rugged site yields very small berries with plenty of concentration. And that is exactly what comes through in this majestic Cabernet.Vinous Media | 96 VMA juicy, round-textured red with plum and berry character, as well chocolate and spice. Wet rock, too. It’s full-bodied and layered with pretty fruit and a long, flavorful finish. Extremely polished and poised. A little tight at the finish. Drink after 2023, but already very attractive.James Suckling | 96 JSRipe and vivid, with a lovely display of cassis, plum and anise flavors driving through nicely, while violet and graphite accents add range and length. A light bramble accent underscores it all, adding good energy. A really strong showing. Best from 2022 through 2036. 396 cases made.Wine Spectator | 95 WS

98
RP
As low as $299.00
2018 accendo cellars cabernet sauvignon California Red

The 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon is just as magnificent as it was last year. Dark, sensual and enveloping, the 2018 possesses off the charts intensity and fabulous balance. Black cherry, plum, chocolate, spice and licorice all build over time, but it is the wine’s mind-blowing intensity and pedigree that are once again so alluring. The 2018 is quite simply regal.Antonio Galloni | 100 AGThe 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon is composed of 85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Cabernet Franc and 4% Petit Verdot. The Cabernet Sauvignon was sourced from Vine Hill Ranch and Sleeping Lady vineyards, the Cabernet Franc came from Diamond Mountain and the Petit Verdot is from the old Abreu Thorevilos vineyard (now called Ecotone). Deep garnet-purple in color, it leaps from the glass with classic cassis, warm plums and boysenberries scents plus nuances of violets, lavender, pencil lead and menthol with hints of crushed rock and tilled soil. Medium to full-bodied, the palate is built like a brick house, framed by firm, grainy tannins and bold freshness with super intense black fruit and earthy layers, finishing long and mineral laced. 995 cases were made.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 98+ RPA lush and inviting style, with gorgeous, velvety waves of cassis, steeped plum and warmed blackberry preserves rolling along, underscored with black licorice and roasted vanilla throughout. The finish is seriously deep and long, with a subtle tug of warm loam lingering with the fruit. Hard to lay off now for its fruit, but this has loads in reserve for the cellar. Drink now through 2040. 995 cases made.Wine Spectator | 97 WS

100
VM
As low as $349.00
2018 dunn vineyards cabernet sauvignon howell mountain California Red

The 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain is elegant, deep and classy. Inky dark purplish fruit, savory herbs, menthol, licorice and spice. The purity of the fruit is remarkable today. There is plenty of youthful Howell Mountain tannin, so readers will have to be patient. Bright floral accents lift the red/purplish berry fruit nicely. This is such an expressive, alluring Cabernet.Antonio Galloni | 97 AGRipe and very juicy, with a youthfully compact set of plum, boysenberry and blackberry compote flavors wrapped in licorice and violet notes. This is both racy and grippy, showing serious power but with the freshness and drive to match. Delivers a long, iron accent that scores the fruit through the finish. Best from 2024 through 2040. 3,523 cases made.Wine Spectator | 96 WSThe 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain is a typically long-term proposition, coated in dusty tannins and cedary oak. It will take time for the cassis, blueberry and slightly pine-scented backbone of this wine to emerge, as for the moment it’s almost difficult to taste. Yes, the concentration is present, the tannins are almost silky-ripe, but the structure of this medium to full-bodied wine is unassailable. Hands off for at least five years, and probably more, to judge by how past vintages have evolved.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 95+ RP

97
VM
As low as $185.00

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