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Flat front label of wine

Chateau Montelena Estate Cabernet Sauvignon 1987

Cabernet Sauvignon from Calistoga, Napa Valley, California
  • RP98
0% ABV
  • RP96
  • V95
  • WS92
  • WW95
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  • JS93
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  • RP91
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  • RP96
  • WE93
  • RP91
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  • WS90
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  • RP93
  • RP98
  • WS95
  • RP93
  • WS92
  • RP94
  • WS92
  • WS95
  • RP95
  • RP91
  • WS90
  • RP95
  • WS90
  • RP95
  • WS91
  • RP94
  • WS94
  • RP91
  • RP96
  • WS92
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  • RP92
  • RP90
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Currently Unavailable $239.00
Try the 2006 Vintage 149 99
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Winemaker Notes

The very low yields from our estate Cabernet vineyard make this wine the essence of Chateau Montelena. The unique characteristics - the "terroir" ­of Montelena Cabernet are concentrated and extraor­dinarily preeminent in this wine. Beginning with the deeply-tinted color, the nose follows with waves of constantly changing aroma: dried fruits, roses and vio­lets, the rocky vineyard soil, cassis and leather, and the oak and cellar aromas particular to Montelena Cabernet.

Following the bouquet, the wine has many layers of flavors. On the palate it is juicy, berry Cabernet Sauvignon and very well balanced. The natural acidity is very slightly elevated in this vintage, giving the wine especially good structure. The finish is long and rich.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 98
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Chateau Montelena has made so many sensational Cabernets that it seems almost impossible to believe that their 1987 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate could be even more profound than any of the exceptional wines made previously at this property. The black/purple color, the extraordinary bouquet of rich cassis, violets, and licorice, the massive extraction of flavors, sensational depth, super ripeness, and a length that must last over a minute, suggest to me that this is easily the most concentrated and potentially longest-lived Cabernet Sauvignon that Chateau Montelena has ever made. The extract level is incredible, yet the balance is there.
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Chateau Montelena

Chateau Montelena

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Chateau Montelena, Calistoga, Napa Valley, California
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Chateau Montelena was founded in 1882 by Alfred Tubbs. The renaissance of the winery, under the leadership of James Barrett, began in 1972 with the replanting of the Estate vineyard and the establishment of the Chateau Montelena philosophy: make the best, period. Today the tradition continues. Jim Barrett’s son, Bo, winemaker at Chateau Montelena beginning in 1982, is now its Master Winemaker. After more than three decades of experience with the same vineyards and varieties, the Montelena Estate Cabernet Sauvignon and Napa Valley Chardonnay are recognized as world-class.

Calistoga

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One of Napa Valley’s oldest wine growing subregions but last to gain appellation status, Calistoga occupies the northernmost section of the valley. Beginning at the foot of Mount St. Helena, its vineyards stretch over steep canyons and roll out onto the valley floor. The soils in Calistoga are rich in volcanic matter, which means they are heavy in minerals, low in organic matter and allow good drainage for vine roots, creating less green growth and more concentration of flavor within the grape berries.

Summer days are very hot but most nights cool down with cooling breezes sneaking in over the Mayacamas Mountains or from Knights Valley to its northwest.

Cabernet Sauvignon is the area’s star variety with Zinfandel coming in a strong second, though the latter commands far less price per tonnage so continues to be outshined by Cabernet in vineyard acreage, save for some important exceptions.

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.

BOBMONTELENA_1987 Item# 125149