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Altamura Cabernet Sauvignon 1994

Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
  • WS91
0% ABV
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Winemaker Notes

The first impression of this wine is an explosion of succulent ripe fruit, with clean and pure flavors of dark berries, black cherry and currants. These initial flavors are delivered to the palate on waves of sweet smoke and the toast of new French oak. This combination creates a dense and supple mouthfeel coupled with long fine-grained tannins which give this complex wine an extremely long and full finish keeping it alive on the palate long after the glass is empty.

Critical Acclaim

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WS 91
Wine Spectator
Smooth and tasty, with pretty vanilla and coffee ground scents. A mature and ready-to-drink '94, with graceful currant, fresh earth, mineral and berry flavors that are ripe and integrated. Finishes with supple tannins.--California Cabernet '74/'84/'94 retrospective.
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Altamura

Altamura

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Altamura, Napa Valley, California
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Established in 1985 by Frank and Karen Altamura, Altamura Vineyards and Winery is the sole winery situated in the historical farming region of Wooden Valley, located within the eastern foothills of famed Napa Valley. Altamura is the first to capture the unique characteristics of Wooden Valley in a bottling. Napa native Frank and Karen have a decidedly hands-on approach to every step of the growing and winemaking process. Thus, a natural production limit is established and the wines reflect the Altamuras' deep commitment to reflecting the terroir of their Wooden Valley Ranch.

Napa Valley

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One of the world's most highly regarded regions for wine production as well as tourism, the Napa Valley was responsible for bringing worldwide recognition to California winemaking. In the 1960s, a few key wine families settled the area and hedged their bets on the valley's world-class winemaking potential—and they were right.

The Napa wine industry really took off in the 1980s, when producers scooped up vineyard lands and planted vines throughout the county. A number of wineries emerged, and today Napa is home to hundreds of producers ranging from boutique to corporate. Cabernet Sauvignon is definitely the grape of choice here, with many winemakers also focusing on Bordeaux blends. Napa whites are usually Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.

Within the Napa Valley lie many smaller sub-AVAs that claim specific characteristics based on situation, slope and soil. Farthest south and coolest from the influence of the San Pablo Bay is Carneros, followed by Coombsville to its northeast and then Yountville, Oakville and Rutherford. Above those are the warm St. Helena and the valley's newest and hottest AVA, Calistoga. These areas follow the valley floor and are known generally for creating rich, dense, complex and smooth reds with good aging potential. The mountain sub appellations, nestled on the slopes overlooking the valley AVAs, include Stags Leap District, Atlas Peak, Chiles Valley (farther east), Howell Mountain, Mt. Veeder, Spring Mountain District and Diamond Mountain District. Wines from the mountain regions are often more structured and firm, benefiting from a lot of time in the bottle to evolve and soften.

Cabernet Sauvignon

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A noble variety bestowed with both power and concentration, Cabernet Sauvignon is now the world's most planted grape variety. Inherently high in tannins and acidity, the best bottlings of Cabernet can age beautifully, with the ability to last fifty years or more. Cabernet Sauvignon flourishes in temperate climates like Bordeaux's Medoc region and forms the base of the Medoc reds, which are typically mostly Cabernet with Merlot and smaller amounts of some combination of Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Petit Verdot. (Enjoying a great deal of success in various regions around the world, this blend is now globally referred to as a Bordeaux Blend.) Cabernet Sauvignon has enjoyed great success throughout the world, particularly in the Napa Valley, and is responsible for some of the world’s most prestigious and sought-after “cult” wines.

In the Glass

High in color, tannin and extract, Cabernet Sauvignon expresses notes of blackberry, cassis, plum, currant, spice and tobacco. In Bordeaux and elsewhere in the Old World you'll find the more earthy, tannic side of Cabernet, where it is typically blended to soften tannins and add complexity. In warmer regions like California Washington, Argentina, Chile and Australia, you can typically expect more ripe fruit flavors upfront.

Perfect Pairings

Cabernet Sauvignon is right at home with rich, intense meat dishes—beef, lamb and venison, in particular—where its opulent fruit and decisive tannins make an equal match to the dense protein of the meat. With a mature Cabernet, opt for tender, slow-cooked meat dishes.

Sommelier Secrets

Despite the modern importance and ubiquity of Cabernet Sauvignon, it is actually a relatively young variety. In 1997, DNA profiling revealed the grape to be a spontaneous crossing of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc which took place in 17th century southwestern France.

PDG137909_1994 Item# 137909