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Mazzei Philip Cabernet Sauvignon 2008

Cabernet Sauvignon from Tuscany, Italy
  • JS94
0% ABV
  • RP94
  • JS92
  • TP92
  • WS90
  • JS93
  • RP93
  • WE93
  • RP93
  • WS91
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Winemaker Notes

Deep, dark purple. Aromas of black cherry, balsamic herbs, coffee and lightly toasted oak. Harmonious flavors of dark fruit, dried flowers, chocolate and vanilla. Exotic, complex character, full bodied with polished, velvety tannins, and a long, smooth finish.

Critical Acclaim

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JS 94
James Suckling
Beautiful aromas of blackberries and wet earth follow through to a full body with velvety tannins and a long finish. Velvety and slightly austere tannins. A Bordeaux blend in homage to Philip Mazzei, who helped the late US president Thomas Jefferson to establish his vineyard in the state of Virginia. It's made from various vineyards of the Mazzei family in Tuscany.
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Mazzei

Philip Mazzei

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Philip Mazzei, Tuscany, Italy
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The history of the Mazzei family is closely woven into Tuscany’s winemaking history, as well as the region’s rich political and cultural past. Ser Lapo Mazzei (1350-1412) a winemaker from Carmignano is considered father of the Chianti name. The extraordinary Fonterutoli estate in Chianti has been owned by the Mazzei family since 1435 and has passed down through 24 generations.

The Mazzei family’s winemaking influence has extended far beyond the realm of Tuscany. In 1774, Filippo Mazzei (1730-1816) was asked by his friend Thomas Jefferson to plant a vineyard at the Jefferson estate in Monticello, Virginia. Jefferson was inspired not only by Filippo’s (Philip’s) viticultural knowledge but also by his ideas regarding equality. The great doctrine “All men are created equal” which was incorporated into the Declaration of Independence by Jefferson, was paraphrased from the writing of Philip Mazzei. Philip’s highly significant contributions to Italian American culture and philosophy were commemorated on a U.S. postage stamp entitled “Patriot Remembered”.

Philip is an extraordinary wine created to both honor the great ancestor Philip Mazzei - a passionate grape grower, forward thinker and citizen of the world – and highlight the Mazzei family’s special connection to the United States. Philip is blend of the finest Cabernet Sauvignon grapes selected from all the Mazzei’s Tuscan estates.

One of the most iconic Italian regions for wine, scenery, and history, Tuscany is the world’s most important outpost for the Sangiovese grape. Ranging in style from fruity and simple to complex and age-worthy, as well as in price from budget-friendly to ultra-premium, Sangiovese makes up a significant percentage of plantings here, with the white Trebbiano Toscano trailing far behind.

Within Tuscany, many esteemed wines have their own respective sub-zones, including Chianti, Brunello di Montalcino, and Vino Nobile di Montepulciano. The climate is Mediterranean and the topography consists mostly of picturesque rolling hills, perfect for Sangiovese as it ripens most efficiently on slopes with maximum exposure to sunlight.

Sangiovese at its simplest produces straightforward pizza-friendly wines with bright red fruit and not much more, but at its best it shows remarkable complexity. Top-quality Sangiovese-based wines can be expressive of a range of characteristics such as sour cherry, balsamic, dried herbs, leather, fresh earth, dried flowers, anise and tobacco. Brunello in particular is sensitive to vintage variation, performing best in years that are not too hot and not too cold. Chianti is associated with tangy and food-friendly dry wines at various price points. A more recent phenomenon as of the 1970s is the “Super Tuscan”—a wine made from international grape varieties like Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Syrah, with or without Sangiovese. These are common in Tuscany’s coastal regions like Bolgheri, Val di Cornia, the island of Elba and more inland, in Carmignano.

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.

SWS342283_2008 Item# 135903