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Arns Cabernet Sauvignon 1999

Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
  • WS89
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Winemaker Notes

Low crop yields and a long growing season produced a dark, concentrated wine that is packed with flavor. The tannins are smoother and this wine is more like a california style cabernet than many of our other wines. It has a rich dark color and is bursting with black fruit, allspice, and cherry flavors. This wine will continue to develop for the next few years and will last for many more.

Critical Acclaim

WS 89
Wine Spectator

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Arns
Arns, , California
Arns
The Arns property was homesteaded in the late 1880’s by a fellow from Germany. The second owner was a stone mason who did very creative plaster work in homes and caves throughout the Valley. He built the Culinary Institute of America in St. Helena, Ca from stones quarried from the property. There is a long history of Zinfandel grapes grown from the previous owners. The Arns family purchased this parcel in the late 1950’s as a retreat for their family. John Arns, along with his brother, Steve, have kept the tradition of grape growing here at Arns. John Arns and Sandi Belcher developed Arns Winery after years of selling grapes to local wineries.

The Winery is located on the hillside east of the historic City of St. Helena, CA, in the heart of the Napa Valley. The 160 acre parcel sits at an elevation of 800 feet above the valley floor and below the Howell Mountain Appellation. The soil for the ten acre all-Cabernet vineyard is Red Aiken Loam, which was planted in the mid-to-late 1960’s. The wines represent selections from ten different blocks, with clones from Bordeaux and the Napa Valley.

Columbia Valley

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A large and geographically diverse AVA responsible for a wide variety of wine styles, the Columbia Valley AVA is home to 99% of Washington State’s total vineyard area. A small section of the AVA extends into northern Oregon as well. Because of its vast size, it is necessarily divided into several distinctive sub-AVAs, including Walla Walla Valley and Yakima Valley—which is further split into three more even smaller AVAs. A region this size will of course have varied microclimates, but on the whole it experiences cold winters and long, dry growing seasons. Frost is a common risk during winter and spring. The towering Cascade mountain range creates a rain shadow, keeping the valley relatively rain-free throughout the year, necessitating irrigation from the Columbia River. The lack of humidity combined with sandy soils allows for vines to be grown on their own rootstock, as phylloxera is not a serious concern.

Red wines make up the majority of production in the Columbia Valley. Cabernet Sauvignon is the dominant variety here, where it produces wines with a pleasant balance of dark fruit and herbs. Wines made from Merlot are typically supple, with sweet red fruit and sometimes a hint of chocolate or mint. Syrah tends to be savory and Old-World-leaning, with a wide range of possible fruit flavors and plenty of spice. The most planted white varieties are Chardonnay and Riesling, the styles of which depend on the warmth of the site. Citrus and green apple are common to both in cooler sites, while warmer vineyards will produce riper, fleshier stone fruit flavors.

Cabernet Sauvignon

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A noble variety bestowed with both power and concentration, Cabernet Sauvignon is sometimes referred to as the “king” of red grapes. It can be somewhat unapproachable early in its youth but has the potential to age beautifully, with the ability to last fifty years or more at its best. Small berries and tough skins provide its trademark firm tannic grip, while high acidity helps to keep the wine fresh for decades. Cabernet Sauvignon flourishes in temperate climates like Bordeaux's Medoc region (and in St-Emillion and Pomerol, where it plays a supporting role to Merlot). The top Médoc producers use Cabernet Sauvignon for their wine’s backbone, blending it with Merlot and smaller amounts of Cabernet Franc, Malbec, and/or Petit Verdot. On its own, 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's typically blended to soften tannins and add complexity. In warmer regions like California 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 revealed the grape to be a spontaneous crossing of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc which took place in 17th century southwestern France.

LAU1019107_1999 Item# 56893

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