Chateau St. Jean Cinq Cepages 1999
Bordeaux Red Blends from Sonoma County, California
This wine always reminds me of the holidays, claims Winemaker Steve Reeder, I lift the glass and welcoming aromas of Yule log, chocolate covered cherries and mocha, invite me in every time. When I taste this wine, I get a medium-bodied entry with big extract that leads to flavors of mocha, black plum, cola and bittersweet chocolate with good intensity and fruit oriented firm tannins. This is a well-structured and well-integrated wine.
Wine Spectator - "Gorgeous Cabernet, offering a mix of ripe, rich, fleshy currant and blackberry fruit, with hints of herb, olive and sage. Finishes with a firm, structured backbone and ripe tannins giving it depth and richness."
The Wine Advocate - "While the 13,000-case cuvee of 1999 Cinq Cepages (76% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc, 4% Malbec, and 2% Petit Verdot) is not as prodigious as the 1997 or 1996, it is potentially outstanding. This New World version of a high class St.-Emilion boasts an opaque ruby/purple color in addition to a sweet bouquet of licorice, dried herbs, tobacco, smoke, black cherries, and cassis. It is medium to full-bodied, with a lovely texture, admirable complexity, and a long finish. The question mark relates to the notion of elevated, dry tannin in the finish. My instincts suggest this characteristic will age out given the wine's overall concentration and intensity."
Chateau St. Jean Winery
Founded in 1973 in the Sonoma Valley, Chateau St. Jean is the quintessential Sonoma winery. Chateau St. Jean produces an extensive portfolio of Sonoma County wines as well as vineyard designated wines, limited production Reserve wines, and the flagship Cinq Cépages Cabernet Sauvignon. Winemaker Margo Van Staaveren uses her more than 30 years of vineyard and winemaking expertise with Chateau St. Jean to continue the tradition of highlighting the best of each vineyard site to produce exceptional wines. Chateau St. Jean was the first Sonoma winery to be awarded the prestigious “Wine of the Year” award from Wine Spectator Magazine for its 1996 Cinq Cépages, a Bordeaux style blend of “five varieties” and has long been recognized as a leader in vineyard designated wines. View all Chateau St. Jean Wines
About Sonoma CountyView a map of Sonoma County wineriesRelated Links:
Twice as large as Napa in size, Sonoma County only makes about half as much wine as its northeasterly neighbor. Because of its vast size, however, Sonoma is able to achieve far more diversity within its borders, which include sub-AVAs that are climatically varied. The atmosphere of Sonoma is decidedly laid-back and down-to-earth, but the wines are serious and well-made, ranging in style from subtle and elegant to rich and powerful. Grape varieties are more varied here, from Pinot Noir and Zinfandel to Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay.
Notable FactsThe largest sub-AVAs of Sonoma include Dry Creek Valley, Russian River Valley, Alexander Valley and Sonoma Valley. Each sub-AVA, with its own micro-climate, is unique in its grape varieties and styles of wine. Dry Creek makes a mean Zinfandel while Russian River produces stand up Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. The Alexander Valley makes some of the better Cabernet Sauvignons in the county and Sonoma Valley creates excellent wines from all the above varieties. Other grapes found throughout Sonoma include Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot and Syrah.
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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