2014 Spottswoode Cabernet Sauvignon Estate, USA, California, Napa, St. Helena, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2014
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A

Do not open this bottle now without a long 8+ hours of decanting.  This is tight as a drum.  86% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Cabernet Franc, and 4% Petit Verdot.  Bright purple in color.  The nose has cedar and cassis.  With air, blueberries, chocolate and spice emerge.  On the palate, this has an almost seamless texture.  Shut down completely at first though and showing no fruit.  With air the cassis emerges along with a wall of tannins.  It seems like all the pieces parts are there, but in a four hour tasting, it never really opened.  Based on prior history with this winery and how it did sho

2012 Jarvis Winery Merlot, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2012
Score: 
91
Grade: 
A-

Purple in color, ruby at the rim.  The nose has sweet plums, black cherries and sandal wood.  Firm tannins.  On the palate, black cherry pie.  Delicious if ripe.  Some heat.  This is more of a cocktail wine to be drunk on its own.  It will prove to be a difficult food match.  Perhaps is settles down with some cellaring.  Drink in the next five to be safe but who knows, it might last twenty.  

2013 Schrader Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon RBS Beckstoffer To-Kalon Vineyard, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2008
Score: 
98
Grade: 
A+

Inky purple in color.  The nose is gorgeous.  Cassis, violets, cedar and graphite.  Very concentrated.  On the palate, this starts out tight but opens in the glass.  Juicy fruit. Black raspberries and blueberries.  Firm tannins.  Very concentrated, this will benefit from at least five years of cellaring.  It has two decades left.  Long finish.  This needs big food right now, and give it plenty of air.  That said, it is drinking just great from a deliciousness point of view!

2008 Scarecrow Cabernet Sauvignon, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2008
Score: 
96
Grade: 
A

Purple in color.  What a lovely nose of cassis, slight cedar, and graphite.  On the palate, this is delicious.  Young but past its childhood.  Ripe but not over ripe.  Cassis layered with cedar and slight mineral note.  Light tannins at this point.  Showing slight tertiary development.  Delicious.  Nice finish.  This will work with bigger foods.  It was nice to drink a Scarecrow with a bit of age on it.  This has a decade and more left on it.  

2015 Mirror Cabernet Sauvignon, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2015
Score: 
92
Grade: 
A-

This is a high end Napa Cabernet.  It needs some time, but it is quite good.  The retail is $95, so certainly it is not within everyone's budget.  Purple in color.  The nose has cassis and chocolate.  Also a bit of graphite.  On the palate, those flavors carry through.  The fruit is pretty ripe.  Lots of black raspberry and plum fruit.  Slight heat on the finish that I suspect will calm down with some bottle age.  This should improve by a point or two with a few years in the cellar and be good for a decade after.  Will work with heavier foods and on its own.  

2014 Eagle Glen Merlot

Vintage: 
2014
Score: 
92
Grade: 
A-

Purple in color.  The nose has cherries, cassis, slight chocolate and spice.  Those flavors continue to the palate.  Light tannins.  This is a tasty, easy drinking wine.  A bit of acidity.  Will work well on its own but also with medium or heavier foods.  Good finish.  

2016 Jax Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon, USA, California, Napa, Calistoga, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2016
Score: 
92
Grade: 
A-

Purple in color.  The nose has plenty of cassis, some cedar, and slight cigar tobacco.  On the palate, this is big ripe cassis fruit.  A bit of mint on the palate as well.  Some spice.  Firm tannins.  This needs a few years and should be good for another ten or more.  This needs big food and will work well on its own.  If drinking in the next few years, give it a few hour decant.  Definitely some upside potential.  

2014 Lobo Wines Cabernet Sauvignon Wulff Vineyards, USA, California, Atlas Peak, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2014
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A

Not to be confused with the wine of the same name from the Valley floor in Oak Knoll, this is from Atlas Peak and is mountain fruit.  This is a step up in quality and price.  Inky purple in color.  Very concentrated.  The nose has cassis, dark chocolate graphite and char.  On the palate, this is tannic.  Concentrated cassis flavors.  Fine tannins.  It opens in the glass but could use some time/decanting.  Nice balance.  Good finish.  A polished wine that should improve for the next five years.  Will work on the dinner table or on its own.  $85 retail.  

2014 Lobo Wines Cabernet Sauvignon Wulff Vineyards, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2014
Score: 
91
Grade: 
A-

From the Valley floor in Oak Knoll.  Purple in color.  The nose is nice with cassis, cherries and baking spices.  The palate has medium tannins.  Ripe cassis fruit and a bit of pepperyness.  Drinks great on its own but would work with heavier foods.  Drinks easy but there is some depth and should improve with some short term ageing.  Retails for $65.  

2013 Myriad Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2013
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A

This is the basic Cabernet from Myriad, superstar winemaker Mike Smith's own winery.  This is in a great place and drinking great right now but has a long life ahead.  Big and full of fruit and power, but not over the top.  Purple in color.  The nose has cassis, slight char, baking spice and slight black cherries.  On the palate, lots of cassis and black cherries.  Also underlying minerality and char.  Medium tannins.  Great balance.  Long finish.  This needs heartier food and also drinks well on its own.  Delicious.  $60 retail is actually a good value for this level of Napa Cab.  Perhaps

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