Spottswoode Cabernet Sauvignon 1994
Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
Pretty and soft, displaying appealing notes of old leather, dried spices, eucalyptus, sweet cedar, wet leaves, truffles, lanolin, bread pudding, and cinnamon. Not deep or power driven, with a lighter, more delicate texture, yet expressive on the palate—long and smooth. Tannins are mature and a bit dusty. Pair with delicate fare, no heavier than duck. Extremely attractive.
The Wine Advocate - "One of California's finest Sauvignons is consistently produced by Spottswoode Winery. With respect to the 1994 Cabernet Sauvignon, a beautifully scented nose of cassis, lead pencil, high quality new oak, and spice is followed by a wine with striking richness and balance. This dark ruby/purple-colored Cabernet possesses fabulous concentration, yet it never comes across as heavy or out of sync. A gloriously made, elegant yet powerfully flavored wine, it is accessible, yet capable of lasting for another 12-20 years. This sensational Cabernet Sauvignon exhibits the more complex, elegant side of California winemaking. Bravo!"
Wine Spectator - "Pleasantly balanced, rich and polished, it's in perfect drinking shape now, with well-defined currant and black cherry fruit, smooth, integrated tannins and a long, complex, elegant aftertaste that gives it a sense of grace and finesse. Finishes with a nice touch of cigar box.--California Cabernet '74/'84/'94 retrospective. Drink now through 2009. 5,000 cases made."
Spottswoode Estate Vineyard & Winery
Spottswoode is a small, family-owned estate located on the western edge of St. Helena in the Napa Valley. The estate, which dates to the 1800s, includes classic formal gardens, pre-prohibition winery buildings and the 40-acre, organically farmed estate vineyard. Spottswoode focuses all of its attention on producing extremely limited quantities of two wines: Sauvignon Blanc and Cabernet Sauvignon. View all Spottswoode Estate Vineyard & Winery Wines
About Napa ValleyView a map of Napa Valley wineries
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.