Robert Craig Cellars Affinity Cabernet Sauvignon 2009
Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
The Affinity estate vineyard is located to the south of Stag's Leap, in the southeastern foothills of Mt. George. The Bordeaux-like growing conditions produce concentrated black-red Cabernet fruit that provides the foundation for a full-bodied wine of great power and elegance.
The 2009 Affinity has a complex fragrance of black cherry, blackberry, cassis and dark espresso, with underlying crushed granite and floral notes of dusty rose petal and violets. The rich, concentrated black and red fruit flavors are wide and deep. Sleek, silky tannins bring substantial weight to the mid-palate, topped with layers of cassis, graphite, roasted coffee and violets. The sweet tannins stride down the finish, bringing along black pepper, cigar box spice and a pronounced minerality. This is a dense, racy and balanced Cabernet Sauvignon, perfect for a ribeye. Decanting is recommended.
Blend: 86% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Petit Verdot, 5% Merlot, 2% Malbec, 1% Cabernet Franc
Wine Enthusiast - "The winery’s Affinity bottling has had mixed results over the years, but this is one of their best, right up there with the 2007. It’s a beautiful wine, absolutely dry, tannic, smooth and complex in black currant flavor. A bright streak of acidity provides wonderful balance, and should help the wine to age through at least 2019."
Vinous / Antonio Galloni - "The 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon Affinity bursts from the glass with an exciting array of dark red berries, flowers, licorice and sweet spices. Floral notes reappear on the finish, adding brightness and lift. This gorgeous, mid-weight Cabernet Sauvignon should continue to drink beautifully for at least a handful of years. In 2009 the blend is 86% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Petit Verdot, 5% Merlot, 2% Malbec and 1% Cabernet Franc."
International Wine Cellar - "Good full ruby-red. Crystallized black cherry, coffee, mocha and loam on the nose, lifted by spices. Broad, smooth and tight-grained, with lovely intensity and lift to the flavors of black fruits, licorice and dark chocolate. Finishes with dusty tannins and a firm spine of acidity."
Wine & Spirits - "Grown in the foothills of Mount George, this is mostly cabernet sauvignon (82 percent) with petit verdot, merlot and small amounts of franc and malbec. It's a broad, richly oaked wine, packed with cherry-scented fruit holding robust tannins."
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Robert Craig Cellars Winery
Robert Craig Winery showcases four Cabernet Sauvignons produced from Napa Valley mountain and hillside vineyards, including Howell Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon from their estate vineyard, Affinity, a classic Bordeaux-style Cabernet, and powerhouse Cabernets from Mount Veeder and Spring Mountain. Each wine conveys a unique personality derived from the soils, climate and varietal characteristics of the growing region. Robert Craig has been a pioneer in mountain vineyard development for over 30 years. During the 1980s, he directed vineyard and winery development on Mount Veeder. Robert Craig wines debuted in 1992. The winery facility is located at 2300 feet atop Howell Mountain, with a Tasting Salon in Downtown Napa. View all Robert Craig Cellars 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.