The structure and pedigree of this fine wine are immediately apparent. It hits the mouth with a wonderful balance of ripe fruit, fine tannins, firm acidity and perfectly integrated oak. The deep flavors of blackberry jam spread onto buttered toast, and drizzled with anise liqueur and melted chocolate, are irresistable. But the tannins are still hard. Decant now for…
Wonderful Napa Cabernet, with the opulence of fruit and textural balance you expect. Ripe black currant and cocoa flavors, with a rich, complex raw-beef streak and layers of toasty, spicy oak. The wine is powerful, yet elegant and restrained. Fine now, but best from 2009–2015.
Continues a string of successful bottlings of this Cabernet. The flavors are strong but subtle, suggesting blackberries and black currants, with earthier notes of dark chocolate and roasted almonds. Very good, but also pretty tannic. You’ll want to cellar this for 5–6 years to let it mellow.
Another fine vintage for this veteran Napa winery. Shows a classic Napa character, with ripe flavors of cassis and blackcurrants and finely-ground, complex but easy tannins. The oak, which contributes vanilla, smoke and woody spice, is strong, but not oppressive. Doesn’t seem to be an ager, and best enjoyed soon.
What a complex nose on this blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cab Franc. The dominant aroma is a leathery, grilled meat scent, alongside charred oak. Blackberry tea and cherry flavors show up in the mouth, where it’s dry, with pure, soft tannins. It’s a bit disjointed now. A few years may bring things together.
There’s tremendous flavor in this wine, with its depth charges of blackberries and jammy currants, cherries and spicy plums and spiced coffee. The tannins are wonderfully smooth and intricate. It could be a little firmer in acids, though, because it’s very soft and melted.
This bottling from Napa veteran St. Clement has been variable in recent years. The ’05 is similar to the ’02. It’s a likeable, elegant Cab that drinks well now. The cherry, blackberry, plum and mocha flavors are wrapped into rich, soft tannins.
Despite ripe flavors of blackcurrants, cocoa and spice and a sweet veneer of oak, this wine needs more acidity to perk it up. It’s soft to the point of melting, and finishes thin. Good, but disappointing.