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M by Michael Mondavi Cabernet Sauvignon 2009

Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
  • WE94
  • W&S90
0% ABV
  • JS97
  • RP92
  • JS96
  • RP95
  • WE94
  • JS94
  • WE93
  • RP90
  • CG95
  • WE91
  • JS90
  • RP94
  • WE92
  • RP93
  • WS91
  • WE90
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0% ABV

Winemaker Notes

The fruit's rich flavors, ripe tannins and balanced acidity enabled Michael to craft an M Cabernet Sauvignon of unmatched richness, elegance and harmony. Extended post-fermentation maceration fully marryies the wine's rich black fruit flavors and supple, sculpted tannins. Stylistically reminiscent of the legendary Mondavi cabernets of the late 1960s and early 1970s, crafted by Michael, M is a prestigious wine reflecting the animo, or "soul," of its maker: compelling, dynamic, and elegant.

Blend: 96% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Petit Verdot

Critical Acclaim

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WE 94
Wine Enthusiast
Expensive, yes, but defines the soft, luxurious modern style of extreme deliciousness. Made with a drop of Petit Verdot that seems to add depth, the wine is fantastically rich in blackberry, blueberry and cherry jam, chocolate and sweet oak. The tannins are a wonder, and there’s just enough acidity to give a balanced tang. Will it age? Yes, but for how long is the question.
W&S 90
Wine & Spirits
Dark in tone, focused on the firmness of its tannins, this wine has the flavor of wild blueberry skins, yielding a juiciness that's equally dark and dense. Its complexities are hidden for now within the structure, needing time to emerge as the tannins open with age.
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M by Michael Mondavi

M by Michael Mondavi

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M by Michael Mondavi, Napa Valley, California
Image of winery
Four generations of passion and experience have come together to create the winery and the wines. It started in 1919 when Michael Mondavi's grandfather, Cesare, was elected to find grapes and winemaking supplies for families to make wine legally during Prohibition. Thus, the Mondavi family began their foray into California winemaking. Michael Mondavi Family Estate embodies Michael's vision of a great, single vineyard, Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon, crafted from 100% estate grown fruit from high atop Atlas Peak on 15 acres of rocky, volcanic soil. It is stylistically reminiscent of the legendary Mondavi Cabernets that Michael made in the late 1960s and early 1970s - complex and subtle.

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.

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.

RPT85150398_2009 Item# 124584