Bryant Family Cabernet Sauvignon 2010
Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
The Wine Advocate - "Teasing the taster with a possible three-digit perfection is the 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon Pritchard Hill. This beauty shows lots of creme de cassis, blueberry liqueur, spring flower and forest floor notes in an opulent, full-bodied, powerful, dense, rich style buttressed by significant ripe tannins and decent acidity. Again, the striking purity and singular character of this Bryant Cabernet Sauvignon oozes potential as well as pedigree. This spectacular, young Cabernet should turn out to be one of the all-time great Bryant Cabernet Sauvignons, rivaling their 1997, but slightly more structured. Forget this one for 3-4 years and drink it over the following three decades."
Vinous / Antonio Galloni - "Smoke, tar, incense and licorice are some of the many notes that emerge from the 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon. This is an especially dark, brooding vintage for Bryant. Cassis, pencil shavings and melted road tar emerge later, adding further complexity and nuance. Unlike the 2009, there is little in the way of early appeal. On the other hand, I see the 2010 drinking beautifully for many, many years. There is an underlying vein of minerality that gives the 2010 a sense of energy and focus.
Range: 96+ Points "
Wine Spectator - "Seductive oak has a smooth vanilla bean edge, leading to a rich yet elegant core of spicy berry, mineral, mocha, gravelly earth and road tar. Most impressive on the finish, where the flavors retain their graceful balance and end with a long, persistent finish. Drink now through 2025. 855 cases made."
International Wine Cellar - "Good full ruby-red. Sexy aromas of cassis, black raspberry, licorice, pepper and sage, plus a whiff of sweet butter. Broad, sweet and deep, with a layered richness to the expressive flavors of black raspberry, toffee, sage and wild herbs. Finishes with broad, suave, dusty tannins. Attractive already, but will show greater definition once it has had several years in bottle to absorb some of its baby fat. (I retasted the 2009 next to this wine and gave the earlier vintage the edge for its combination of almost exotic richness and minty lift. With its full-blown, Pomerol-like aromas of black raspberry, tobacco and truffley underbrush and creamy texture, the '09 is balanced to give immediate pleasure, but it has the firm tannins and fresh acidity for a long life in bottle. I rated it 94 back in Issue 162; my recent bottle merited 95 points.) 93(+?) points "
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Bryant Family Winery
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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.