Araujo Eisele Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 2003
Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
Produced from a small crop of concentrated, ripe berries, this deep and dark wine exhibits an endless bouquet of crushed blackberries and cassis, highlighted by floral nuances of dried lavender and chamomile, and spicy notes of clove and nutmeg. In the mouth, it is a full-bodied, seamless wine, with a juicy mid-palate layered with hazelnuts, mocha, pencil lead and licorice, and a rich, lingering finish of wet granite and fine tannins.
Notes winemaker Francoise Peschon: A beautiful balance of power and elegance, this remarkable, highly concentrated cabernet exhibits a purity of flavors and origin. It is expressive, vibrant, lively, and complete, and should age for many years.
The Wine Advocate - "One of the candidates for “wine of the vintage,” the 2003 Cabernet Sauvignon Eisele Vineyard represents 1,600 cases produced from a 40-acre vineyard, which tells you how Draconian Araujo’s selection process is. The final blend of 88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Cabernet Franc, and 3% Petit Verdot has resulted in a beautifully pure wine displaying an extraordinary floral, black currant, and mineral-scented bouquet, with no hint of new oak. The purity, richness and full-bodied power yet surreal finesse and impeccable balance should be cherished by wine lovers. This beauty can be drunk now and over the next two decades. Wow! "
International Wine Cellar - "Good ruby-red. Captivating aromas of black raspberry, toffee, mocha and flowers. Dense, lush and sweet, with fruit flavors complicated by game, mocha and brown spices. This offers lovely harmony and finishes very suave and very long, with an enticing fruit/tannin balance.
Range: 94+ Points"
Wine Spectator - "Wonderfully executed ripe cherry and currant-laced fruit is shaded by spicy, toasty oak that picks up hints of mocha and espresso. Avoids excessive ripeness and is well-balanced, with a long finish that shows firm, structured tannins and a touch of mineral."
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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.