2013 Futo 5500, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2013
Score: 
97
Grade: 
A+

I tried this a couple of years ago and thought it needed 10 more years.  Now, we are down to 8 I guess.  At least.  This is a spectacular wine but it needs time (think Latour).  While it showed well, it just felt like we there is more to come.  Indeed, if one has the patience to wait, this is probably a 100 point wine.  Today, its close but not quite.  Purple in color, magenta at the rim.  The nose has cassis.  Its dusty with iodine.  With air some dark cherries emerge.  On the palate, this is juicy with bright acidity.  Firm tannins that strengthen in the glass.  Black raspberries, blue be

2012 Nine Suns Cabernet Sauvignon Houyi Vineyard, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2012
Score: 
98
Grade: 
A+

My first time trying this vintage and only second time trying the winery.  Spectacular showing.  This wine was allowed to breathe for about 8 hours and still needed more air.  Some vigorous swirling in the glass allowed it to open, but it really needs more cellar time.  Purple in color, magenta at the rim.  The nose has cassis, blueberries, iodine and sandalwood.  Beautiful.  On the palate, there is some initial warmth but that disappears with air.  Very smooth.  Balance.  medium tannins.

2012 Fairchild Estate Cabernet Sauvignon Sigaro, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2012
Score: 
96
Grade: 
A

My first time trying this that I can recall.  Very impressed.  Purple in color, ruby at the rim.  The nose is great with cassis, and slight graphite.  This bottle had been allowed to breathe for the better part of the day and still took some time to open.  It opened nicely in the glass though.  Bright acidity.  Cassis and slight cough drop note especially on the finish where it was joined with a bit of menthol.  Firm tannins.  Probably best to hold these or decant for a few hours at this point.  Some upside here for sure.  

2012 Marcassin Chardonnay Marcassin Vineyard, USA, California, Sonoma, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2012

I have had this before and loved it, but this bottle, not so much.  Perhaps an off bottle or shut down at this time?  Just last summer, I scored it 100 points, so this was curious.  Some liked it more than I, but most of the room seemed to comment that it wasn't what they might have been expecting.  It is good, but this should be one of the preeminent California Chardonnays.  It happens, but I can only review the bottle I drank.  Light green/gold in color.  The nose is dusty with tine, clay, spice and oak.  No fruit.  No noticeable TCA or other faults.  On the palate, it has a nice texture.

2009 Fleming's Cabernet Sauvignon 46 Diamonds

Vintage: 
2009
Score: 
87
Grade: 
B

This is a Cab made especially for Flaming's Steak House.  It is solid if a bit generic.  Purple/ruby in color.  The nose is dusty with cherries and some cassis.  On the palate, this drinks easy.  Light tannins.  Not a lot of complexity.  Cassis fruit.  Slight earth.  

2011 Jean Edwards Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon Stagecoach Vineyard

Vintage: 
2011
Score: 
92
Grade: 
A-

Purple/ruby in color.  The nose has cassis and dust with a bit of spice.  Warm.  On the palate, this has cassis, tart cherries, a bit of baking spice and slight herbal notes.  It drinks like pretty classic Napa Cab.  Not super ripe but not under ripe either.  I can see this being a bit divisive for those who want a fruit bomb.  This is not that.  Showing a tight layering, it unwinds in the glass.  Has a nice complexity but there is some upside to come.  It was popular at the dinner table with our friends.  

2013 Bevan Cellars Sugarloaf Mountain Vineyard, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2013
Score: 
98
Grade: 
A+

Wow.  Yes, this is expensive but this is truly an amazing wine.  Purple in color.  The nose is just amazing.  Cassis, blueberries, slight spice and sandalwood, some cedar.  Deep and complex.  On the palate, open for business.  Bevan wines drink better younger than any luxury wines I know of.  Cassis, blueberries, slight earth/minerals.  Deep and complex.  Great mouthfeel.  Damn delicious.  One of those wines where each sip leaving you wanting another one.  Then the bottle is drained.  Hard to say if this will get better, maybe so with some maturity.  

2013 Grgich Hills Chardonnay, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2013
Score: 
89
Grade: 
B+

A classic Napa Chardonnay.  Light golden in color.  This has seen a lot of the oak integrate over the last year or two which is good.  There is still some vanilla on the nose but also some nice lemon cream.  On the palate, this has good acidity.  Lemon with spice and vanilla.  Decent finish.  This is not their top of the line and is priced accordingly.  As such, it presents some value in the Napa Chard world.  Not a stunner but certainly a wine most people at least enjoy.  There is still some possible room for this to improve with a couple more years of cellaring.  

2007 Groth Cabernet Sauvignon, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2007
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A

Purple in color, ruby at the rim.  The nose is slightly earthy with black raspberries.  Light tannins mostly resolved.  Very smooth.  Some layering as it unwinds in the glass.  Cassis, earth.  Finishes with a bit of menthol.  This is showing gorgeously and I think probably at peak right now.  No hurry but I would drink in the next decade and maybe a bit sooner.  It won't get better.  Groth is a wine that is maybe not as trendy as it used to be, but that is not because of any lack of quality.  They still consistently put out top notch Napa Cabs.  

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