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Caymus Special Selection Cabernet Sauvignon 1992

Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
  • RP94
  • WS90
0% ABV
  • WW93
  • WS91
  • WE90
  • WS95
  • JS92
  • WW92
  • WW98
  • RP96
  • WS94
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Winemaker Notes

Opaque, with deep ruby-red edges, even the sight of this wine is enticing. Very deep, rich cassis fruit, enmeshed in a smoky, mineral background, dominates the nose. Pure cassis extract is also present on the palate; a sweet entry yields to a firmly tannic, yet generous and amazingly long finish. Fine grained tannins give a serious texture to the wine. A rich, smoky spice character emerges in the aftertaste. A very complete, unctuous wine. Muscular and intensely concentrated, it nevertheless manages to display perfect balance. This wine will age for two decades effortlessly.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 94
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Caymus has one of the most enviable track records of any California winery. Having followed their Cabernet Sauvignons since the early seventies, I find it remarkable that this winery has never gone through a slump. Not many wineries, anywhere in the world, can match the Wagner family's consistent record of success. Although Charlie and Chuck Wagner probably won't admit it, I have the impression they feel white wine is meant for rinsing your mouth out before drinking their reds. Cabernet Sauvignon has always been king at Caymus. This is one winery where you can open a 1974, 1975, or 1976 with confidence, knowing the wine will still be loaded with ripe fruit. The Caymus Special Selection is one of the most renowned luxury cuvees of Cabernet Sauvignon in California. The price of $100 a bottle is bold, controversial, and has undoubtedly made more than a few enemies. Nevertheless, for a decadent, lavishly oaky, explosively rich, intense, soft as silk style of Cabernet Sauvignon, it is hard to beat. Never unapproachable, the Special Selections (especially since the mid-eighites) taste almost too delicious when released. This has given rise to criticism that the wines will not last. While modern day vintages of Special Selection Cabernet Sauvignon are not as concentrated as earlier vintages (i.e, the 1975 and 1976), this is still a wine that will endure 15 or more years of cellaring. The 1992 Cabernet Sauvignon Special Selection (a February, 1996 release) is superior to the 1991 and 1990. The 1992 displays an opaque ruby/purple color, followed by huge, full-throttle aromatics offering a blast of sweet, toasty new oak combined with exceptional red and black fruits.
WS 90
Wine Spectator
Maturing in color and taste, with a mix of dill, cedar, plum, coffee, pencil shavings and herbal notes. Smooth-textured, offering depth and dimension, with a long, complex finish.
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Caymus

Caymus

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Caymus, , California
Caymus
As the Wagner family celebrated the 40th anniversary of Caymus Vineyards in 2012, they thought back to 1972 which Charlie Wagner, Lorna Belle Glos Wagner and their son, Chuck, built their winery among the vines planted on the family's ranch in Rutherford, California - the center of the Napa Valley. In 1975, the Wagners produced their first Special Selection Cabernet Sauvignon, which remains the only wine to have twice been named Wine Spectator's "Wine of the Year" (1984 and 1990 vintage).

Napa Valley

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One of the world's most highly regarded regions for wine production and tourism, the Napa Valley is the AVA that brought worldwide recognition to California winemaking. 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.

Within the Napa Valley lie many smaller sub-AVAs that lend even more character specifics to the wines. Furthest south is Carneros, followed by Yountville, Oakville & Rutherford. Above those two are St.-Helena and the valley's newest 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 District, and Mt. Veeder. Wines from the mountain regions are often more structured and firm, benefiting from more time in the bottle to evolve and soften.

Bordeaux Blends

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One of the world’s most classic and popular styles of red wine, Bordeaux-inspired blends have spread from their homeland in France to nearly every corner of the New World, especially in California, Washington, and Australia. Typically based on either Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot and supported by Cabernet Franc, Malbec, and/or Petit Verdot, these are sometimes referred to in the US as “Meritage” blends. In Bordeaux itself, Cabernet Sauvignon dominates in wines from the Left Bank of the Gironde river, while the Right Bank focuses on Merlot. Often, blends from outside the region are classified as being inspired by one or the other.

In the Glass

Cabernet-based, Left-Bank-styled wines are typically more tannic and structured, while Merlot-based wines modeled after the Right Bank are softer and suppler. Cabernet Franc can add herbal notes, while Malbec and Petit Verdot contribute color and structure. Wines from Bordeaux can be bold and fruit-forward or restrained and earthy, while New World facsimiles tend to emulate the former style. In general, Bordeaux red blends can have aromas and flavors of black currant, cedar, plum, graphite, and violet, with more red fruit flavors when Merlot makes up a high proportion of the blend.

Perfect Pairings

Since Bordeaux red blends are often quite structured and tannic, they pair best with hearty, flavorful, and fatty meat dishes. Any type of steak makes for a classic pairing. Equally welcome with these wines would be beef brisket, pot roast, braised lamb, or smoked duck.

Sommelier Secret

While the region of Bordeaux is limited to a select few approved grape varieties, the New World is free to experiment. Bordeaux blends in California may include Syrah, Petite Sirah, Zinfandel, or virtually any other grape deemed worthy by the winemaker. In Australia, Shiraz is a common component.

LSB24133_1992 Item# 24133

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