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Ric Forman’s 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon is all class. The 2016 won’t be ready to drink for at least another few years, but it is already super attractive, and also very typical of Ric Forman’s style. Lavender, spice, and red cherry run through this wine made in a mid-weight, translucent style that is all class and finesse.Antonio Galloni | 94 AG
The base cuvée is the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon, which is 82% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Cabernet Franc, 6% Merlot, 4% Petit Verdot, and 1% Malbec sourced all from Rutherford. It has a classic, Saint Julien-like bouquet of crème de cassis, tobacco lead, damp earth, and spice that gives way to a full-bodied, concentrated, textured Cabernet that hits all the right marks. The top Rubicon release has a touch more elegant and precision, but this isn’t far off. Drink this stunner any time over the coming 20 years or more.Jeb Dunnuck | 94 JDBeautiful aromas of ripe cabernet sauvignon with blackcurrants and perfume that follow through to a full body, firm and silky tannins and a pretty long finish. Shows poise and polish. Drink in 2021.James Suckling | 94 JSThe 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon is elegant, polished and nuanced, with lovely inner sweetness and soft contours - both of which give the wine much of its overall immediacy and appeal. Medium in body and caressing, the 2016 has so much to offer. This is an especially accessible, young 2016 that already drinks well.Antonio Galloni | 93 AGThe 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon is a blend of 82% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Cabernet Franc, 6% Merlot, 4% Petit Verdot and 1% Malbec. Medium to deep garnet-purple colored, it opens with notions of cherry tart, redcurrant jelly, freshly crushed blackberries and wild blueberries with hints of pencil lead, tobacco and underbrush. Medium to full-bodied, the palate possesses plenty of juicy black and blue berries with a firm, chewy frame and savory finish. 7,475 cases produced.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 92 RPJuicy blackberry and red currant fruit is stitched with bramble and anise notes, backed by an apple wood accent on the finish. Still a bit tight, so give this a little time. Best from 2021 through 2027.Wine Spectator | 91 WSThis impressive wine opens in a bouquet of violet and dried herb, with an intensity of tannin power at its back. Red and black currant, cranberry and clove combine in a seam of textured complexity and nuanced flavor. Enjoy 2026–2036.Wine Enthusiast | 91 WE
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
The 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Peral Vineyard is a blend of 98% Cabernet Sauvignon and 2% Merlot. Deep garnet-purple colored, it starts out a little broody/tarry, giving way to a core of warm cassis, baked plums and mulberries, plus hints of charcoal, charcuterie and sautéed herbs. Full-bodied, rich and plush in the mouth, it is chock-full of savory-laced black fruits, finishing earthy.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 92+ RPOut of the darkness, smoky wood esters emerge first, then a scent of red currants, sweet and soft. Come back to the wine a day later, and the flavors have clarified around those currants, light and lithe. This is a gentle cabernet that may not appear to need aging, but it will reward those who allow it some time.Wine & Spirits | 92 W&S(Foley Johnson Cabernet Sauvignon Peral Vineyard) Even better, the 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Peral Vineyard offers impressive notes of cedar wood, new leather, lavender, and darker currants, with a meaty, spicy character that emerges with air. Medium to full-bodied and nicely concentrated, as well as balanced, drink this savory, spicy Rutherford Cabernet over the coming 10-12+ years. (Drink between 2022-2035)Jeb Dunnuck | 92 JDMulberries, dark cherries, wild herbs and baking spices on the nose. Full-bodied with firm, fine tannins and lively acidity. Vibrant with a velvety, fruity and spicy finish. Drink or hold.James Suckling | 91 JSSteeped plum and blackberry fruit melds nicely with touches of vanilla, cedar and warm earth through the finish, with a polished feel overall that makes this accessible now too. Drink now through 2026. 10,036 cases made.Wine Spectator | 90 WSThis elegant red is earthy, with highlights of clove, currant and cedar. The midpalate is thick, concentrated and intense, built by a bold tannic grip that eases as it sits in the glass. Wine Enthusiast | 90 WE
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