M by Michael Mondavi Cabernet Sauvignon 2009
Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
The fruit's rich flavors, ripe tannins and balanced acidity enabled Michael to craft an M Cabernet Sauvignon of unmatched richness, elegance and harmony. Extended post-fermentation maceration fully marryies the wine's rich black fruit flavors and supple, sculpted tannins. Stylistically reminiscent of the legendary Mondavi cabernets of the late 1960s and early 1970s, crafted by Michael, M is a prestigious wine reflecting the animo, or "soul," of its maker: compelling, dynamic, and elegant.
Blend: 96% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Petit Verdot
Wine Enthusiast - "Expensive, yes, but defines the soft, luxurious modern style of extreme deliciousness. Made with a drop of Petit Verdot that seems to add depth, the wine is fantastically rich in blackberry, blueberry and cherry jam, chocolate and sweet oak. The tannins are a wonder, and there’s just enough acidity to give a balanced tang. Will it age? Yes, but for how long is the question."
Vinous / Antonio Galloni - "The 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon M by Michael Mondavi is a pretty wine laced with tobacco, dried flowers, raspberries and gentle spices. Today, the tannins appear to be a bit firm considering the wine’s otherwise mid-weight structure. There is good balance in the glass, but not the personality, pedigree or excitement I expect in this price range. Anticipated maturity: 2014-2024."
Wine & Spirits - "Dark in tone, focused on the firmness of its tannins, this wine has the flavor of wild blueberry skins, yielding a juiciness that's equally dark and dense. Its complexities are hidden for now within the structure, needing time to emerge as the tannins open with age. "
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M by Michael Mondavi Winery
Four generations of passion and experience have come together to create the winery and the wines. It started in 1919 when Michael Mondavi's grandfather, Cesare, was elected to find grapes and winemaking supplies for families to make wine legally during Prohibition. Thus, the Mondavi family began their foray into California winemaking. Michael Mondavi Family Estate embodies Michael's vision of a great, single vineyard, Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon, crafted from 100% estate grown fruit from high atop Atlas Peak on 15 acres of rocky, volcanic soil. It is stylistically reminiscent of the legendary Mondavi Cabernets that Michael made in the late 1960s and early 1970s - complex and subtle. View all M by Michael Mondavi 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.