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Inglenook Rubicon 2002

Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
  • WE98
  • W&S96
  • V90
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Currently Unavailable $129.00
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Winemaker Notes

"This is the best Rubicon ever..."
-Wine Enthusiast

Rubicon is the pure reflection of what was once the historic Inglenook property located in the heart of the western Rutherford Bench, Napa Valley s prime Cabernet Sauvignon appellation. In 1975, Francis and Eleanor Coppola purchased a majority of this historic Estate and introduced the Niebaum-Coppola Estate Winery. After three years of careful study and planning, they launched an ambitious venture to revitalize the great Cabernet heritage of Inglenook. In 1978, the new winery created its first vintage of Rubicon, a proprietary Bordeaux-style blend that would become the flagship wine of the Niebaum-Coppola Estate. Produced from 100% certified organically-farmed grapes, Rubicon always reflects its terroir first, vintage second.

Critical Acclaim

WE 98
Wine Enthusiast

Fragrant, showing cascades of violets, caramelized new oak, sweet cherry pie, cocoa and cassis aromas. In the mouth, it’s unctuous, and floods the palate with sweet, savory flavors. Has a youthful jamminess right now, which will melt off and refine as time goes by. Such is the elegance and balance that cellaring it for 20 years will be no problem. This is the best Rubicon ever.

W&S 96
Wine & Spirits

Perhaps the best vintage of Rubicon to date, this wine grows at one of the best cabernet sauvignon sites in Napa Valley, on the Rutherford benchlands first planted by William C. Watson in 1871, before 19th-century shipping magnate Gustav Neibaum selected the land for his own ambitious estate. Now it belongs to Francis Ford Coppola, who spent the last 30 years reassembling what is now a 1,700-acre property. Winemaker Scott McLeod uses heavily toasted French oak the way he would if he were making a first growth in Bordeaux, and here the fruit lives up to the barrels. The wine has an internal energy; it feels bursting with life, in bloom. The dark fruit is at once luscious and beautifully formed, the flavor lasting for minutes. A genuine expression of place.

V 90
Vinous / Antonio Galloni

Dark ruby-red. Aroma of roasted plum, chocolate, mocha, fennel and mustard seed.Juicy and intense, with a restrained sweetness to the rather suave flavors of black cherry and black cherry.Finishes with firm, chalky tannins and very good length.This bottle was considerably riper and more concentrated than a sample I rated 87 in Issue 126.

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Inglenook

Inglenook

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Inglenook, , California
Inglenook
In 1879, Finnish explorer and adventurer Gustave Niebaum searched the Napa Valley with the goal of establishing a wine estate to rival the finest chateau of France. For decades his wines won acclaim and remain some of the most admired in American wine history's classic period. By the mid-1960's, his property was divided, and estate-wine production ceased.

A decade later, Francis Ford Coppola purchased 1,500 acres of this historic property and revived Captain Niebaum's fine winemaking tradition. In 1995, Niebaum-Coppola acquired the remainder of the property and restored the Inglenook Estate to its original dimensions.

Paso Robles

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A rugged, sunbaked plain that has long served as a haven for outlaws and rogues...

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A rugged, sunbaked plain that has long served as a haven for outlaws and rogues, Paso Robles has made a name for itself as a source of rebelliously powerful wines. With 11 smaller sub-AVAs, there is quite a bit of diversity to be found in this inland portion of California’s Central Coast.

This is mostly red wine country, with Cabernet Sauvignon and Zinfandel standing out as the star performers. Other popular varieties include Merlot, Petite Sirah, Petit Verdot, and Rhône varieties both red and white. There is a fairly uniform tendency here towards wines that are unapologetically bold and opulently fruity, albeit with a surprising amount of acidity thanks to the region’s chilly nighttime temperatures.

Cabernet Sauvignon

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A noble variety bestowed with both power and concentration...

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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.

JSV88287_2002 Item# 88287

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