Original Wine Note:
Winter rainfall was below normal, suggesting a return to drought, but the growing season was generally mild, and the resulting small crop yielded rich, concentrated wines. The Private Reserve, which included 1 percent Cabernet Franc, was blended of wines from the Chabot, St. Helena Home and Bancroft Ranch vineyards. This is a big, fruity wine-gorgeous and on a very big scale. It shows great harmony and the impeccable balance of fruit and oak similar to the 1985 Private Reserve.
2007 Tasting Note:
Lighter than Ed remembers it.
Dark fruit jamminess, yet fruit is subdued compared to past.
Pine, cedar, peppery, cocoa, mint, spicy, savory, menthol and tertiary flavors.
Hibernating right now, best to hold.
"Still firm, intense and tannic, but not out of line, with lots of vitality and pure, ripe, rich flavors built around a core of juicy black cherry and blackberry. Turns chocolaty on the finish; has a long life ahead, though it's enjoyable now. "
"The generously endowed, dark purple-colored 1990 Cabernet Sauvignon Private Reserve is a rich, opulent, full-bodied wine loaded with layers of flavor, copious amounts of juicy fruit, sweet tannin, and moderate amounts of lavish oak. Less muscular and concentrated than the 1991, it is a superb expression of a Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. Beringer continues to make a strong case for being California's most popular and hottest winery."
The Wine Advocate
My second foray into 10 yr. plus wines. The nose is subtle yet still fruity with leather and spice compliments. On the palate so smooth and complex. The blackberry, current, oak, tobacco, etc. flavors are completely integrated. Wonderful mouth feel. A wine to absolutely savor. Had this with a perfectly grilled Ribeye. So good. Best wines for me to date are this and a '96 Robert Mondavi PR. Aging works when done right.
Smooth & Supple
A nicely matured expression of a classic California cabernet. The tannins have rounded nicely. Pretty on the nose, almost floral. Nice mouthfeel. Black fruit still present, with soft oak and spice in layers. Quite complex. Time to drink this one. It won't get any better.
I'm sorry to report that the bottle we received of the Berringer 1990 was very poor quality.The cork was dry and the wine tasted as if it had turned.One sip was all I could tolerate