Red Wines    Cabernet Sauvignon    Napa Valley    California   
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Date Printed: 4/24/2014
Scarecrow M. Etain Cabernet Sauvignon 2008
Scarecrow M. Etain Cabernet Sauvignon 2008
(search item no. 120336)
collectible wine
boutique wine


PRICE ON 4/24/2014: $199.00

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2011 Vinous / Antonio Galloni rating: 94 points
2011 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
2009 The Wine Advocate rating: 93 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Unmistakably from the Cohn Ranch in Rutherford, Napa Valley, this lovely Cabernet shows all the trademark nuances for which this ranch is known. Intense dark cherry, black plum and raspberry tones slowly escape from the wine surface, carrying with them nuances of of sweet baking spices (clove, nutmeg), vanilla, warm star anise, cedar, and warm mocha notes. On the palate, the texture is immediately broad and full, with a soft, heavy-satin sensation akin to melted dark chocolate. The finish echoes the fruit expression in the aromas, evoking dark fruits and a cocoa/mocha tone.
My Notes:

About Scarecrow:

THE SCARECROW STORY

The Scarecrow story begins in a patch of earth with a fabled past. The J.J. Cohn Estate, where Scarecrow grapes are born, borders what was once the legendary vineyard of Inglenook winemaker Gustave Niebaum, whose plantings blanketed more than 1,000 acres of the Napa Valley at the close of the 19th century.

John Daniel Jr. took the helm at Inglenook in 1939, determined to restore the label to pre-Prohibition standing and produce world-class Bordeaux-style wines. In 1945, Daniel convinced his neighbor, J.J. Cohn, to plant eighty acres of Cabernet vines on the 180-acre parcel Cohn had purchased a few years prior. The property served as a summer retreat for Cohn's wife and their family. He had no ambitions to become a winemaker himself, but Daniel promised to buy his grapes, so Cohn planted vines. The rest, as they say, is history.

J.J. Cohn fruit figured prominently in Inglenook's superlative Cabernet Sauvignons of the post-war era, and has more recently gone into wines of such renown as Opus One, Niebaum-Coppola, Duckhorn, Insignia and Etude.

J.J. Cohn Estate grapes are highly sought-after in part because Cohn bucked the trend, begun in the mid- 1960s, of replacing vines planted on St. George rootstock with the supposedly superior AxR#I hybrid. Over time, vines grafted onto this new stock proved highly vulnerable to phylloxera. But by then, virtually all of the old St. George vines in Napa had been destroyed. Only the original 1945 J.J. Cohn vines survived. These highly prized "Old Men" continue to produce uncommonly rich fruit—the hallmark of Scarecrow wine.

But the Scarecrow story doesn’t end there. This is more than a tale of enchanted ground and the exceptional wine that flows out of it. The Scarecrow story is a story, too, of an extraordinary family legacy. Joseph Judson Cohn was born in Harlem in 1895 to Russian immigrants. Cohn spent his childhood in dire poverty and never learned to prefer the taste of fresh bread over stale—even after he’d found great success in Hollywood.

A move west in the 1920s launched Cohn’s studio career. Highly resourceful and extremely capable, Cohn began as a bookkeeper, distinguished himself early and rose quickly through the ranks to become Chief of Production at MGM. His unofficial credo, "Nothing is impossible," became the motto of his MGM staff. They knew him as a man who simply refused to take "No" for an answer.