95 + – Awe Inspiring Wine

Feb 112014
2010 Caymus Vineyards Special Selection Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley, CA, $130 (S) – Rating 97

Truly an extraordinary wine, the kind only a few select winegrowers can produce, even from the best Napa Valley fruit. The nose is robust with aromas of dark cherry pie with hints of campfire smoke and mocha. For full effect this big boy needs an hour or more to decant. A soft and luxurious mouth-feel, full-bodied with balanced tannins and enough acidity for pairing with a juicy porterhouse, but this wine, in my opinion, should be enjoyed all on it’s own. Bold flavors abound of black cherry, blueberry and chocolate/cacao with notes of black pepper and smoke. A bit of espresso in the long finish. Buy This Wine

Mar 282011
2007 Pratt Vineyard Pinot Noir, Sonoma Coast, CA $49 (s) – Rating 95

James MacPhail of MacPhail Family Wines is a master of Pinot Noir and it shows in this wonderful wine. As it opens this Pinot offers something more with each sip. A silky and complex wine with supple tannis, it will hold your attention. Dark flavors of black cherry, cola and smoky saddle leather make this an utterly delicious wine. Other scores on this wine range from 90-96.

Mar 132011
2003 Rombauer Stags Leap Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley, CA $90 – Rating 95

One of Rombauer’s small production (400 cases) single vineyard AVA Cabernets. Extremely approachable now and drinking beautifully after a short decant. This is a truly elegant, well balanced wine with a very supple and velvety tannin structure. Lot of dark fruit and berry flavors accented with a touch of toffee and hint of pepper. The wine paired very well with the roast we served. However,  it is big enough to command your attention by itself. Available only at the Rombauer Vineyards tasting room or online at Rombauer.com.

Jan 052011
2006 Late Harvest Chardonnay Carneros, CA  $55 (.375) — Rating 95

I don’t know where to start. Joy is a beautifully sweet and rich dessert wine and a big hit on our holiday table. Rich flavors of honey and ripe apricot with a touch of orange and toffee make this a wine taste like a dream you don’t want to end.

Jan 042011
2002 Dunn Howell Mountain, Napa Valley, CA, $95 — Rating 98

A Napa Valley winemaker once told me that winemakers on Howell Mountain winemakers are “in their own world up there.” If that’s true, then Randy Dunn’s Howell Mountain Cabernets are out of this world. The 2002 is no exception. Big Chewy Fruit, Big Tannins and Big Oak without big alcohol are beautifully balanced into a wine that commands your attention and contemplation. Be patient, this big cab need some time to breathe for maximum pleasure.

Dec 122010
2007 Napa Valley, CA (S) $70 — Rating 97

Corison Cabernet  is the elegant restrained style of Napa Cabernet that I fell in love with years ago. Cathy Corison has created a very well balanced with soft tannins that envelope your tongue without biting. At 13.8 alcohol, the dark rich fruit is alive and powerful without being fruity. An expensive wine at $70, but luxury has its price.

Nov 262010
Las Alturas Vineyard- 2008 Monterey, CA $44 — Rating 5.0

Another great wine from Belle Glos. Very full bodied, structured yet supple. Wonderful dark berry flavors and spice. This rich Pinot Noir could command my attention all night. It paired very well with our Thanksgiving smoked turkey. W.E. rated this Pinot Noir 90…I’d say 92. Check out this video on Las Alturas Vineyard

Nov 262010
Thomann Station 2006, Napa Valley, CA $50 — Rating 95

This is what Petite Sirah is all about. Fleshy, smokey, meaty and peppery and manly wine. Pairs wonderfully with smoked meats. RP gave this wine a well  deserved 95… I agree!

Nov 132010
2006 – Napa Valley, CA – $60 (S) — Rating 95

Benessere calls this blend of Cabernet, Sangiovese, Merlot and Syrah a Super-Napan because the blend is similar to an Italian Super-Tuscan. I call Phenomenon…PHENOMENAL! (all puns intended) I was blown away by this creative blend. Expect rich flavors of dark ripe cherry, a touch of smokey oak, plum and worn saddle leather. Grab a bottle for a cold night and snuggle up with your honey.