Chateau St. Jean Cinq Cepages 2010
Bordeaux Red Blends from Sonoma County, California
The 2010 Cinq Cépages is a stunning color in the glass, deep ruby with a subtle violet colored rim. Layered aromas are vivid; black plum, blackberry compote, clove spice, tanned leather and a hint of fresh tobacco leaf. Secondary aromas of raspberry and spiced cherry mingle with notes of violet and pomegranate. The aromas lead to an incredibly juicy palate with flavors of blueberry, cherry and blackberry. Nuanced flavors of espresso and a distinct mocha component add to the complexity. The full-bodied wine has smooth, silky tannins that offer solid structure but do not overwhelm. The wine is plush and approachable yet complex and appealing in the glass. In signature Cinq Cépages form, this wine combines the strength of the diverse Sonoma County region to create a well-balanced, complex and powerful wine.
Blend: 78% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc, 3% Petit Verdot, 2% Malbec
Wine Spectator - "An authentic Bordeaux-style expression from Sonoma. Firm, dense and muscular, with a tight core of vivid blackberry, spice, cedar, loamy earth, black olive and cigar box notes, framed by tight, ripe, gripping tannins that extend the flavors. The finish impresses with purity, focus and complexity. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot and Malbec. Drink now through 2026."
The Wine Advocate - "Far superior is their flagship offering for Bordeaux varietal blends, the 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon Cinq Cepages, which is 78% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc and the rest Petit Verdot. It possesses a deep ruby/purple color along with notes of cranberry sauce, black cherries, black currants, dusty, loamy soil, unsmoked cigar tobacco and underbrush. Medium to full-bodied and rich with light tannins as well as a textured mouthfeel, there are 7,000 cases of this beauty that can be enjoyed over the next 10-12 years"
Vinous / Antonio Galloni - "Dark plum, black cherries, licorice, smoke and new leather are all layered into the 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon Cinq Cepages. This is another huge, intense wine from Chateau St. Jean, but the flavors have a sense of brightness and cut that is not found in the 2009 Reserve reds, much of that coming from the higher acidity of the vintage. I would give the 2010 at least a few years in bottle. It has more than enough freshness to age well for a number of years. The cooler vintage balances some of the wine's more overt qualities nicely.
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Chateau St. Jean Winery
Chateau St. Jean is a winemaking estate located at the foot of the Sugarloaf Ridge in Sonoma Valley near Kenwood, California. Founded in 1973, Chateau St. Jean has long been recognized as a leader in Vineyard Designated wines. Winemaker Steve Reeder has built a reputation for making wines of power and elegance. With over 20 years of vineyard and winemaking experience, his knowledge of Sonoma makes him a master in highlighting the best of each vineyard. Chateau St. Jean was the first Sonoma winery to be awarded the prestigious "Wine of the Year" award from Wine Spectator for its 1996 Cinq Cepages Cabernet Sauvignon, a Bordeaux-style blend of "five varieties." 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 a half the amount of wine as her northeasterly neighbor. But Sonoma, with her size, is able to vouch for more diversity within her borders, including sub-AVAs that are climatically varied. The atmosphere of Sonoma is decidedly laid back and down home country style. But in wines, they are keeping up with the Joneses, or Napa-ites if you will. 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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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.