Araujo Eisele Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 1993
Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
The 1993 vintage is a pure, classic expression of the Eisele Vineyard aromas and flavors of black cherry, cassis, chocolate, mineral and spice, complemented by toasty sweet vanilla and a clear cedar note. Surprisingly elegant and polished, the wine's intense richness is balanced by exceptionally fine and silky tannins, delivering a lingering full-bodied finish.
The Wine Advocate - "As I reported last year, the 1993 Cabernet Sauvignon Eisele Vineyard is a spectacular wine from a vintage that has consistently received unfavorable press (particularly from the Wine Spectator). It seems to me that if the 1993 vintage were taken out of the context of the historical succession of outstanding years in the nineties, and put in the eighties, qualitatively, 1993 would tower over the likes of 1987, 1985, or 1984. The Eisele Vineyard 1993 Cabernet Sauvignon is one of the half dozen or so candidates for wine of the vintage. I have tasted it three times out of bottle, once rating it as high as 98, but never less than 96. It is a mind-boggling Cabernet Sauvignon that is remarkably well-balanced for its size and intensity. The color is an opaque purple, and the nose offers up smoky, chocolatey, blackcurrant, licorice, and mineral scents. On the palate, the wine reveals fabulous density, concentration, sweetness of fruit as well as tannin, and a 30-40 second finish. Although there is a high percentage of new oak, this wine has completely soaked it up, a testament to its extract and concentration of fruit. While the wine displays a certain precociousness, unusual for a 1993, there is plenty of tannin lurking in the finish, but it is well-concealed by the wine's exceptional richness. This beauty is destined to age effortlessly for 20-25 years. The Eisele Vineyard has always produced concentrated Cabernet Sauvignons with blackcurrant/cassis personalities intermixed with a mineral component. What the Araujos have been able to achieve is to intensify the fruit character, as well as the wine's purity and definition. That, plus high quality French oak barrels and a natural approach to winemaking has resulted in a succession of extraordinary Cabernets that began in 1991, and shows no signs of abating."
Wine Spectator - "Remarkably youthful and vibrant, with spicy currant, plum, black cherry and anise flavors that pick up touches of earth, mocha and cigar box. Enormous complexity, depth and range of flavors. Has hit an ideal drinking plateau now, but could well last another decade. Decant.--1993 California Cabernet retrospective. Drink now through 2012. 1,285 cases made."
Since 1971, some of California's most ageworthy and intensely-flavored Cabernet Sauvignons have been made from grapes grown at the Eisele Vineyard, located on a benchland near the northern end of Napa Valley, just east of Calistoga. Protected by the Palisades Mountains to the north and cooled by westerly breezes from the Chalk Hill Gap, this 38-acre vineyard is planted on warm cobbly soils that produce a low-yielding crop of exceptionally concentrated fruit. Bart and Daphne Araujo acquired the Eisele Vineyard in 1990, and committed to producing only wines of the highest caliber and distinction. Araujo Estate produces 4 wines each vintage: Cabernet Sauvignon Eisele Vineyard, Altagracia, Syrah Eisele Vineyard and Sauvignon Blanc Eisele Vineyard. View all Araujo Wines
About Napa Valley
It's hard not to think of Napa Valley when thinking of California wines. The region is, after all, the one that brought world recognition to California wine making. The area was settled by a few choice wine families in the 1960's who bet that the wines of the area would grow and flourish. They were right. The Napa wine industry really took off in the 1980's, when vineyard lands were scooped up and vines were planted throughout the county. A number of wineries emerged, from large conglomerates to small boutiques to cult classics. Cabernet Sauvignon is definitely the grape of choice here, with many winemakers also focusing on Bordeaux Blends. Whites are usually Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.
Notable FactsWithin the Napa Valley lie smaller sub-AVAs that lend even more character specifics to the wines. Furthest south is Carneros, followed by Yountville, Oakville & Rutherford. Above those two is St.-Helena and finally, just grated an AVA, Calistoga. These areas are situated on the valley floor and are known for creating rich, smooth Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Chardonnay. There are a few mountain regions as well, nestled on the slopes overlooking the valley AVAs. Those include Howell Mountain, Stags Leap and Mount Veeder. Wines from the mountain regions are often more structured and firm, benefiting from more time in the bottle to evolve and soften.
About CaliforniaIt's not rare to see a wine's country of origin listed as "California." A country into itself in the wine world, California makes enough varieties and styles to match many European wine countries. It produces a diverse range of wines that span the quality spectrum.
The most famous of the California wine regions is Napa Valley, and these wines are certainly outstanding – but it's not as broad and diverse as its larger neighbor, Sonoma County. Down south, Santa Barbara's Santa Maria Valley is well-known for its Rhône blends, as well as cool-climate varieties like Pinot and Chardonnay. The Central Coast, the largest California AVA, has many different microclimates that lead to a wide range of wines with many sub-AVAs.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.