ZD Wines Cabernet Sauvignon Abacus II, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

Score: 
94
Grade: 
A

This is an interesting wine.  It is a Cabernet made in a Solera style.  The first vintage had 1992 thru 1998.  This is the second vintage and then included a Solera of 1992 thru 1999.  Purple in color, ruby at the rim.  The nose has cedar, cassis, dust and with air, an earthiness comes out.  Layered and complex on the palate,  Cassis and spice and underlying earthiness.  Good finish.  Basically, this is high end Napa Cab, but the Solera gives it a bit of complexity.  Needs big foods.  

2013 Kapcsándy Family Winery Vino Del Sol State Lane Vineyard, USA, California, Napa, Yountville, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2013
Score: 
89
Grade: 
B+

A Port styled wine made from a blend but mostly Merlot.  Purple in color.  The nose has cherry liqueur, chocolate and slight raisin.  Full bodied.  Slightly sweet.  Raisins, chocolate and cherries.  Relatively simple and not a lot of depth.  Worked well as a desert wine and would match a more savory dessert.  

2010 Joseph Phelps Insignia Proprietary Red Wine, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2010
Score: 
96
Grade: 
A

This is made from 84% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Petit Verdot and the rest Merlot and Malbec.  Insignia is one of the First Growth wines of California.  Its great just about every vintage and has been for decades.  This one is no exception.  Inky purple.  The nose has cassis, graphite, blueberries, leather and cigar box.  On the palate, this is still young.  Medium tannins.  Great balance.  Lots of cassis and some blueberries with underlying damp forest floor.  Long finish.  Delicious.  Will work great with heartier foods and certainly with meat dishes.  The price on these is up to around $250

2011 Au Sommet Cabernet Sauvignon, USA, California, Napa, Atlas Peak, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2011
Score: 
89
Grade: 
B+

This is a blend of 97.5% Cabernet Sauvignon and 2.5% Petit Verdot from Heidi Barrett.  Purple in color, ruby at the rim.  The nose has cassis, slight smoke, bell pepper and tobacco.  On the palate, this is nice and everything is in proportion.  Not a lot of depth.  Tannins mostly resolved.  Worked well with vegetarian stuffed mushrooms.  A fine wine but its price tag on release was $250.  Granted 2011 was a difficult vintage, but that is a lot of money for this wine. 

1982 Silver Oak Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley, USA, California, Wine Review

Vintage: 
1982
Score: 
88
Grade: 
B+

From Magnum.  This has held up nicely and is drinking well.  Like and older Bordeaux.  Ruby in color, slight bricking at the rim.  The nose is nice with cassis and cherries along with some tobacco and dust.  On the palate, this has layers of fruit and earthy forest floor.  Good balance.  This seems very food friendly.  Probably a bit past prime at this point, but still with lots to offer.  

2003 Bond Pluribus, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2003
Score: 
96
Grade: 
A

This is from Bill Harlan.  At age 15, this wine seems to be at peak and is singing.  Purple in color.  The nose has cassis, slight smoke, slight vanilla and slight cigar.  On the palate, this has a nice silky texture.  Slight wispy tannins.  Lots of cassis fruit.  Plenty of depth and tight layering that unwinds in the glass.  This drinks like a almost mature Bordeaux wine.  Will work with meats and heartier foods.  

2011 Carter Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon The O.G. Beckstoffer To-Kalon Vineyard, USA, California, Napa, Oakville, WIne Review

Vintage: 
2011
Score: 
92
Grade: 
A-

Purple in color.  The nose has nice cassis, a bit of blueberries, spice and cocoa dust.  On the palate, this is very good but lacks intensity.  Lots of cassis fruit along with some chocolate.  Good finish.  This won't get any better but should be good for another ten years.  Will work with medium and heavier foods.  

2013 EMH Cabernet Sauvignon Black Cat Special Selection, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2013
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A

Purple in color, ruby at the rim.  This is very tight and in fact, much less forgiving than bottles tried a year and two years ago.  The nose is dusty with black cherries.  On the palate, cassis and medium tannins.  It opens a bit with air, but at this point, it should probably sleep for five years.  If you must open one, give it 8+ hours of air.  There is a nice wine in there once it opens up, but a much higher potential.  

2016 Arkenstone Sauvignon Blanc, USA, California, Napa, Howell Mountain, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2016
Score: 
91
Grade: 
A-

Silvery green/gold in color.  The nose has minerals and wax with slight tropical fruit.  On the palate, this is soft with low acidity but still quite refreshing.  The Semillon seems to dominate at this point.  Blind, it drinks like a ripe white Bordeaux.  Peaches and minerals with some waxiness.  Should work with a lot of foods.  It will be interesting to see how this improves, if at all, with some age.  

2013 Mayacamas Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon, USA, California, Napa, Mt. Veeder, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2013
Score: 
97
Grade: 
A+

This cab is known for being backwards and taking a long time to come around, yet, this, while still in need of cellar time was drinking quite well.  Purple in color, ruby at the rim.  The nose has cassis, and spice with some black cherries.  On the palate, cassis, spice and black licorice notes with firm but manageable tannins.  Goof balance and finish.  If drinking before 2013, give it some air, but it should go well with heavier or roasted dishes.  There is certainly some room for improvement.  One of the best Mayacamas Cabs in years!

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