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O'Shaughnessy Mt. Veeder Cabernet Sauvignon 2018 is made from 91% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Merlot, 3% Malbec, 2% Saint Macaire
This is a classic Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon with an opaque purple color and perfumed aromas of blackberry compote, orange blossom, cassis, creme brulee, and cocoa. On the palate the wine is plush and concentrated with well-integrated tannins and a vibrant finish. Lush enough to be consumed now and structured enough to hold for decades thanks to the mountain heritage of this beautiful wine.
This red is youthful, wound-up and full of tension. Plush, polished tannins add to a weighty mouthfeel filled with deep flavors of cassis and blood orange, with seasonings of sage, herbes de Provence and black and white pepper. A showcase of sophisticated complexity, it will do well in the cellar. Enjoy 2028–2038.
-Wine Enthusiast 98 Points
The vines from our steeply terraced, Betty's Vineyard, struggle for nourishment and moisture consistently producing clusters with small berries and intense flavors. Wines from this vineyard have been highly acclaimed through the media since our first vintage in 2002, for their power and elegance. Aromatically, we love the lavender and violet tones emanating from this property. We acquired this property in 2000 and farm only 17 acres on this remote 55-acre estate.
The 265 acre Woolls Ranch was purchased in 2006 and produced its first fruit in 2012. We have 32 planted acres here and grow primarily Cabernet Sauvignon on this remarkable site. We also cultivate small blocks of Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Malbec, Carmenere and St. Macaire.
Betty O’Shaughnessy Woolls & Paul Woolls Proprietors Betty hails from Minnesota, having spent her childhood growing up in a rural farming community. After college, she raised a family while building a career in real estate investment/development in Minneapolis. Her entrepreneurial spirit and passion for food and wine fueled the fires that transitioned her from owner/teacher of a cooking school in Minneapolis, to creating a winery in Napa Valley. In Napa, Betty fell in love with the beauty of the land, the vineyards, and the climate. In 1990, she landed in Oakville with a parcel of land, including vineyards and a home site. Betty reconnected with her deep-rooted appreciation of the soil and the bounties it brings. Over the next few years, additional vineyards on Howell Mountain and Mount Veeder added to the source available for varieties of grapes. The new century brought a cave, grapes crushed into wine and a design for a winery structure. The project completed in time for the harvest of 2003. In addition to the winery, Betty remains an active volunteer and philanthropist in the community. In 2009, her community involvement expanded to include an exciting new role as Trustee for Napa's Queen of the Valley Medical Center. Paul, too, began life in the Midwest. Born almost on the campus of Indiana University, he later moved to New Mexico. He now sheepishly admits it was there he developed the beginnings of a passion for wine, albeit on brands that today no serious vigneron would admit consuming. From those beginnings, Paul found in college that starving for a month would allow for one great meal at the only French restaurant nearby. Then law school and his practice allowed the drive to learn about wine to thrive. That drive culminated in a fortuitous wine tasting where he met Betty. Together, they now share a challenging goal of making the best possible wine from the exceptional vineyards they steward. Likewise, they are most fortunate to enjoy family life provided by numerous children (all girls) and even more grandchildren (mostly boys). Betty and Paul continue life’s joyous ride as companions, partners, and winemaking buddies in the O’Shaughnessy Estate Winery.
Force Majeure Cabernet Sauvignon Red Mountain is made from 100 percent Cabernet Sauvignon.
The estate Cabernet Sauvignon is grown primarily along the southwest ridge of the vineyard. The vines produce small berries with bountiful flavor, concentration and intensity, but also a good degree of finesse, excellent structure and layers of complexity that will continue to develop during extended bottle aging for those who want to cellar and age their wines. The wine is powerful, elegant, full-bodied.
Bottled unfined and unfiltered.100% free run
Pumpovers and punch-downs, up to 45 day macerations
Native yeast, 5 day cold soaks
22 months in 75% new French oak barrels
Fermented in concrete and stainless closed top tanks.
"One of the wines of the vintage. Comprised of 95% Cabernet Sauvignon, with small parts Merlot and Petit Verdot, this saw 80% new French oak prior to bottling. The nose is downright intoxicating with crème de cassis, anise, blueberry compote and sandalwood tones that all meld in the glass. The palate is rich and seductive, with not only beautiful concentration but a seamless texture and downright brilliant length. Rich crème de violette, sagebrush, blackberry cordial and mocha flavours provide plenty of exotic appeal."
- Decanter (April 2021), 99 pts
Avennia Red Willow Cabernet Sauvignon is made from 100% Cabernet Sauvignon.
The Red Willow Cabernet is a true blockbuster.
Coming from one specific block of 30 year old vines at this iconic vineyard, then strictly barrel selected, this is the essence of powerful, old vine Washington Cabernet. After all of our efforts promoting the idea of the Bordeaux blend, it would take a pretty compelling argument to suspend that idea and make a 100% varietal Cabernet. In 2016 Red Willow provided us with just that. Each time we tasted it in the barrel, the belief grew that this was something special. Something we can't make every year. In the end we were won over, and decided to make a limited amount of this wine. But don't be fooled, as this too is a blend and a selection. Each year as we are tasting the grapes as harvest approaches, we notice that the vines near the bottom of this long, steep west-facing slope, are a little different. The vines at the bottom are in a little richer soil, and get a little more water, so we pick them separately, sometimes even a week or ten days apart, and keep them separate in barrel.
This wine is all from the top of the vineyard, with its lower yield and poorer soils giving more concentration and interest. Then further, nearly every combination of new and used French oak barrels were trialed to find the best blend. It's not enough just to use the four best barrels, but to trial each combination to see how they complement each other. For a wine with this much mass, 100% new French oak was used for the first time at Avennia. It is a wine that needs a little cellaring to start, but should last a very long time.
Made from 100% Red Willow Cabernet Sauvignon, the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Red Willow is another gem from this great winemaker. Deep purple-colored, with a huge perfume of blackberries, crème de cassis, cedarwood, pencil lead, and graphite, it hits the palate with medium to full-bodied richness and depth, nicely integrated acidity, and building, ripe tannins. Give bottles 3-4 years and it too will cruise for 15-20 years or more.
- Jeb Dunnuck (April 2019), 95 Points
Hoopes Cabernet Sauvignon Oakville is made from 100 percent Cabernet Sauvignon.
“Our flagship wine is, and always has been, the soul of our farm. Crafted from our ten-acre vineyard in the heart of Oakville, planted in 1983, it was previously a fruit source for a number of famous estates until we started winemaking ourselves. The soil is dense in geologic composition, featuring four different types of soil. One, volcanic, is unheard of in the Oakville sub-appellation, with the exception of To Kalon, and is rarely, if ever present, in valley floor vineyards. We harvest this vineyard in fourteen small batches, despite the small size, to ensure the perfect balance of acid, flavor, and tannins.”
This wine's deep garnet hue invites you to dive into the nose as it opens with soft fruity-floral aromas of lilac and rose petals then moving into red fruits, pencil shavings, honey and plum. The aromas are deceptively delicate and refined with an ethereal quality. The mouth is more concentrated leaning towards ripe, rich black fruits. Juicy blueberry and sweet licorice flavors carry into the mid-palate with an open, spacious and inviting character. Lush, elegant, tannins support a mouthwatering finish with a savory aspect and notes of black tea bringing the wine to a balanced and layered close
Aging for 22 months in 100% French oak barrels (45% new)
A broad-shouldered version, with waves of black currant, fig and boysenberry that are well-steeped in feel, laced with loam and tobacco details and backed by grip and muscle, showing enough brambly energy to stay focused and continue moving through the dense finish. Best from 2021 through 2030. 2,000 cases made.
-Wine Spectator 92 Points
Justin Isosceles Proprietary Red Paso Robles is made from 83% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc.
In 1987, we made our first vintage of a wine styled after the famous First Growth producers of Bordeaux, created with the same uncompromising care as the Grands Vins of those venerable chateaux. For more than 30 vintages, ISOSCELES has been our flagship wine and quality benchmark for this style of wine here on the Central Coast of California. A blend based on Cabernet Sauvignon supported by Cabernet Franc and Merlot, the 2018 ISOSCELES shows why Paso Robles is such a great place to grow these varieties.
Full-bodied, with ripe black fruit, complex baking spice and amazingly ready to drink right out of the gate, you can try a bottle or two now, but make sure to save a few to enjoy this wine as it continues to evolve after some time in the cellar.
Appearance: Deep ruby/purple core with black secondary color, lighter toward the rim with moderate plus viscosity and slow forming, moderately stained tears.
Aroma: Very aromatic and complex with ripe black cherry and cassis fruit, vanilla, cinnamon and licorice spice with sweet tobacco, cedar, leather and camphor notes.
Palate: Full-bodied with ripe black cherry and blackcurrant fruit complemented with baking spice and oak notes on entry. Sustained fruit and spice are joined by savory autumn leaf, cedar and leather on the mid-palate with mouth filling, fine tannins that lead into a long, complex and balanced finish with attractive fruit, spice, cedar and subtle camphor notes.
Try it with a classic herb crusted roasted rack of lamb, a grilled prime ribeye steak, or the exquisite cheeseburgers with tomato, arugula, bacon jam and chive aioli from The Restaurant at JUSTIN.
Arrowood Vineyards Reserve Speciale Cabernet Sauvignon is made from 100 percent Sonoma Cabernet Sauvignon.
Introduced to the nose with seductive dark fruit and aromas of blackberry, fresh fig, and licorice, this wine is rich in complexities. Fresh notes of Bing cherry and violet also surface as the wine breathes. Framed by a firm structure and silky elegance, the persisting texture defines what makes this wine the Reserve Speciale. The power behind this wine ingratiates itself to the entire palate—dark chocolate and nutmeg outline baking spices and plum. And a lingering finish will carry on long afterwards. The long barrel aging and year in bottle before release guarantee its readiness to drink. However, those that hold onto it will be rewarded, with an aging potential of 20+ years.
The deep purple-black colored 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve Speciale (100% Cabernet Sauvignon) sings of fresh blackcurrants, warm plums, mulberries and black raspberries with touches of cedar chest, pencil lead, underbrush and sautéed herbs. Full-bodied and laden with black fruits and earth layers, it has a firm, grainy structure and a long, earthy finish. 715 cases produced.
-Wine Advocate 96 Points
Far Niente Estate Bottled Cabernet Sauvignon is made from 93.3% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3.8% Petit Verdot, 2.3% Cabernet Franc, 0.5% Merlot and 0.1% Malbec.
An elegant perfume of mixed berries, baking spice, dried lavender and thyme open onto a full palate layered with expansive mixed berry, black tea, toasted oak and spice flavors. Focused and fresh, fine grained tannins support the wine throughout, while the finish is silky, long and lifted.
The wine combines select vineyards in Rutherford, Calistoga and St. Helena that complement our home in Oakville and embody our long-established house style. Cabernet has been a hallmark of Far Niente’s winemaking program beginning with its very first vintage in 1982. The marriage of these diverse vineyard sites has allowed us to craft our finest expression of Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. This wine exemplifies our nearly four decades of mastery in growing and making Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon.
This memorable Cabernet Sauvignon has small amounts of Petit Verdot, Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Malbec blended in. Aged 17 months in a majority of new French oak, it unfurls flavors of red fruit, dried herb and clove over a core of youthful tannin and spicy oak. Best from 2028–2038. Cellar Selection.
-Wine Enthusiast 95 Points
Including small amounts of Petit Verdot, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, and Malbec, the 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon sports a deep purple color as well as classic Cabernet notes of blackcurrants, new leather, tobacco leaf, flowers, and lead pencil. Beautifully done on the palate and made in a seamless, elegant style, it has a kiss of Pauillac in its nicely integrated acidity, ripe, building tannins, a touch of earthiness, and a great finish. It's not a blockbuster, just seamless and elegant, with a thrilling character. It should keep for 20+ years.
-Jeb Dunnuck 95 Points
Mt Brave Cabernet Sauvignon is made from 88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6.5% Cabernet Franc, 3% Merlot, 1.5% Petit Verdot and 1% Malbec.
Lots of cassis and black raspberry fruits as well as classic Mount Veeder notes of lavender, violets, bouquet garni, and rocky, mineral-like notes emerge from the 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon. A deep, full-bodied mountain Cabernet Sauvignon, it has a plush, layered texture, beautiful tannins, a deep, concentrated mid-palate, and a great finish. Another head-turning wine from this label, it’s a candidate for the best Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon out there at the price point.
-Jeb Dunnuck 97 Points
This packs in lots of dense yet sleek blackberry, mulberry and black currant fruit flavors, while anise, sassafras and violet notes add range throughout. There's plenty of structure embedded as well, though it tilts to the zesty, acid-driven side of the ledger, further enlivening the fruit. This has a serious oak treatment, but it's very precise and fine-grained. For the cellar. Best from 2022 through 2038. 6,753 cases made
-Wine Spectator 95 Points
Blackberry and chili with hints of cloves and graphite. Bitter chocolate, too. Full-bodied, very linear and tight with intense tannins that lead you down the finish. Solid structure. Needs four or five years to open up. Better after 2025.
-James Suckling 95 Points
A blend of 88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6.5% Cabernet Franc, 3% Merlot, 1.5% Petit Verdot and 1% Malbec, the 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Mt. Veeder was aged for 22 months in oak barrels, 82% new. Deep garnet-purple colored, it springs from the glass with vibrant crème de cassis, baked plums and Morello cherries scents, followed by nuances of sautéed herbs, clove oil, mocha and scorched earth. The full-bodied palate is densely laden with layers of black and blue fruits, sporting a rock-solid backbone of grainy tannins and great tension, finishing long and minerally.
-Wine Advocate 95+ Points
Mt Monster Cabernet Sauvignon is 100 percent Cabernet
Winemaking: Our Cabernet is fermeneted in static fermenters at controlled temperatures to retain the varietal aromatics. Once complete the wine is left for 7-1- days on skins to aide in the extraction of soft fleshy tannins and build wine structure. French and American oak has been used sparingly to ensure maximum fruit expression is retained in the final wine.
Tasting notes: Deep purple in colour. Classic aromas of lifted blackcurrant, blackberry and mint on the nose. Flavours follow through of sweet berry-fruit accented by fresh muddled mint. Elegant, structured palate with big velvety tannins.
Trefethen Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon is made from 85 percent Cabernet Sauvignon; 10% Petit Verdot; 3% Merlot; 2% Malbec; 1% Cabernet Franc.
Ample rainfall in the spring recharged the soil profile and provided a strong start to the growing season. The weather during the summer featured consistent warmth and sunshine without any major heat spells. Cooler than average temperatures in August and September slowed the ripening process, providing long hang time and leading to complex flavor development. October was mostly dry and warmer than usual allowing us to pick each block at optimal ripeness. The harvest was complete before November and the start of an epic rainy season.
Rich, deep red garnet color with aromas and flavors of black currant, ripe plum, and blackberry. Notes of lavender, cocoa, and leather are layered with black pepper and vanilla bean. Full-bodied and intense, this wine is balanced and well-structured with seamless acidity and firm tannins. This powerful wine is approachable and enjoyable now and will continue to evolve and show its personality over the next decade.
Winery Chef Chris Kennedy loves to pair this wine with black pepper or thyme to bring out the layered notes of this Cabernet Sauvignon. These spices soften the tannins allowing the fruit notes of the wine to be more noticeable and enjoyable. He suggests pairing it with our Ahi Tuna au Poivre recipe.
“For the second year running, it’s an Oak Knoll Cabernet which has carried the Best In Show torch for the Napa, underlining the fact that this spot in the Valley seems to be ideal for mingling Napa’s diagnostic generosity and depth with an expressive finesse and an approachability which both appeals to our judges and chimes with the wine world’s zeitgeist. The wine is still dark black-purple, and the aromatic currant and berry fruits are blue, tender and enticing, with skilled and seamless oak integration. On the palate, the wine has weight and depth — but what you really notice in this 2018 vintage is its purity and inner energy; the weight and depth follow on after, but don’t overwhelm from the start. The seamless integration of acidity and brisk tannin, too, is another mouthwatering hallmark — of skilled winemaking, or the place? Who’s to say?” – July 2021
- BEST IN SHOW
Decanter World Wine Awards 97 Points
It is hard to imagine with the Lithology range receiving 298 points out of 300 for the three single-vineyard wines, that there could possibly be a wine above them. But there is, and it is our Estate wine. Blended several times very intently by masters of their craft Philippe Melka and Michel Rolland, this is the ultimate expression of our house’s work. Positive, full-bodied, and quite powerful, there’s the expected crème de cassis and blackberry from St. Helena Cabernets, with mineral, herb, subtle tobacco and vanilla, plum skins, and pie crust, purple flowers, forest-conifer notes, and very fine tannic structure. It is a magnificent, and magnificently elegant expression of this house, and when asked recently, Monsieur Rolland stated plainly to me, “oh yes indeed – this is the best one, the best yet…”
The flagship 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Alejandro Bulgheroni comes from a selection made by winemakers Philippe Melka and Michel Rolland, mostly from Rutherford and Oakville fruit. Aged 20 months in 78% new French oak, it has incredible aromatics of black and blue fruits, spring flowers, and graphite to go with a massive, full-bodied, concentrated style on the palate that somehow stays graceful, weightless, and elegant. This tour de force in Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon is guaranteed to put a smile on your face over the coming 20-25+ years.
-Jeb Dunnuck 99 Points
Alejandro Bulgheroni Lithology Beckstoffer Dr. Crane Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 99% Cabernet Sauvignon, 1% Cabernet Franc.
Here the Cabernet comes to us typically flawless, and the wines are as such. There is blue fruit, blueberries, black plums, blackberries, and cassis to the aromas, as well as stones, mineral, chocolate, fresh tobacco, and subtle herbs. It is incredibly full-bodied, but at the same time effortlessly drinkable, with ultra-smooth tannins and a positive, long, upturned finish. 70-75% new French oak is the norm for us with Dr. Crane, and those flavors are absorbed to become a vanillin complexity, sweetness, and length. An unbelievable wine.
Possibly the wine of the vintage, the 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Lithology Beckstoffer Dr. Crane Vineyard is another incredible wine from this estate that has everything: stunning complexity, full-bodied richness, flawless balance, and incredible length. Revealing a dense purple color as well as Graves-like notes of blackcurrants, cold fireplace, graphite, chocolate, and smoked tobacco, it hits the palate with full-bodied richness, flawless balance, and ultra-fine tannins. Based on 99% Cabernet Sauvignon and 1% Cabernet Franc that was brought up 20 months in 70% new French oak, this thrilling 2018 offers pleasure today yet will evolve for 30-40+ years. Hats off to the team at Alejandro Bulgheroni!
-Jeb Dunnuck 100 Points
Alejandro Bulgheroni Lithology Beckstoffer Las Piedras Cabernet Sauvignon is made from 100 percent Cabernet Sauvignon.
From a St. Helena vineyard planted by early Napa settler Edward Bale more than 150 years ago, and later serving as the estate vineyard for the area’s first winery built by Henry Pellet in 1860, the Las Piedras site always gives us our prettiest wine. When placed next to Dr. Crane and To-Kalon wines, the Las Piedras show a certain elegance, with a very graceful entry and finely detailed complexity. We produce it with at least 75% new French oak, so there is a floral, spicy, and vanilla accent to the intense red and black fruits, cassis, and black cherry liqueur. What distinguishes this bottling is the beautifully fine tannins, delicate texture, and stunning purity. (Less than 100 cases made.)
Fermentation 70% Oak, 24% Concrete, 6% Puncheon
"The 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Lithology Beckstoffer Las Piedras Vineyard comes from a world-class site outside of St. Helena and is all Cabernet that spent 20 months in 80% new oak. It offers a touch more red fruit as well ample cassis, spring flowers, loamy earth, and spice-like aromas and flavors. It has a wonderful sense of minerality, ultra-fine tannins, a dense, layered texture, and incredibly purity of fruit. It’s another just about off the charts release from this estate."
- Jeb Dunnuck 98 Points
Ottella Lugana DOC Riserva Molceo is made from 100% Trebbiano di Lugana - 25-30 years old.
The wine is produced in the area of San Benedetto di Lugana in estate vineyards that are most suitable due to the high content of white clay.
COLOR • Golden, clear, intense.
NOSE • It immediately opens with fruity notes that are enchanting, penetrating and complex. Characterized by hints of citrus fruits, flowers and fine mineral and elegant notes.
PALATE • Complex and intense blend of mineral flavors; captivating, long, lively, both in the persistence and in the strength of the flavors, mingling with unmissable citrus sensation. A delicate evolution, fine flesh, perfect longevity.
Since 2009 it has won every year the TRE BICCHIERI GAMBERO ROSSO award.
The harvest and selection of the grapes are done strictly by hand, in small 17 kg crates.
PLANTING LAYOUT AND YIELD • Double bow Guyot, yield around 8,000 kg. of grapes per hectare, equivalent to 5,040 liters of wine or 63%.
HARVEST PERIOD • Harvest late in October.
FINING AND FERMENTATION • Delicate, soft pressing of the whole bunch for most of the production, the rest with gentle destemming by oscillation. Thereafter, a strict protocol of vinification: partial malolactic fermentation, fining for 16 months on the yeast and fine lees, which mostly takes place in stainless steel tanks (80%) and the rest in wooden tonneaux and barriques.
Stimulating with marine or freshwater fish, it also goes well with savory or fatty meat (goose or pork). Enjoyable with seasoned, herbal cheeses of various types and elaborate dishes.
"There’s a wild peppery and herbal freshness to the 2018 Lugana Riserva Molceo that keeps you coming back to the glass. A pretty bouquet of fresh peach, nectarine, kiwi and hints of vanilla bean develops over time. This is weighty and oily at first, yet it’s lifted by cooling acids and minerals, as white orchard fruits and hints of savory spice flesh out across the palate. A salty tension lingers on, along with notes of dried apricot and a twang of tart citrus. - Eric Guido"
- Antonio Galloni's Vinous (February 2021), 90 pts
Boroli Barolo is made from 100 percent Nebbiolo.
A fruity, round-textured red with plums, berries and hints of cedar. It’s full-bodied with juicy tannins and a flavorful finish.