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Obsidian Ridge Half Mile 2013

Cabernet Sauvignon from Red Hills, Lake County, North Coast, California
  • WE92
  • RP90
14.7% ABV
  • WE94
  • WE91
  • WE94
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14.7% ABV

Winemaker Notes

This reserve selection boasts an initial red fruit profile with underlying chocolate cherry cordials. Hints of cedar, brown sugar, leather and plums round out the nose. Upon revisiting, even more layers are revealed, including spice with nutmeg and whole cardamom pods. This wine is surprisingly soft on the palate, with notes of red cherries, cinnamon and vanilla extract. This vintage boasts red fruit tones, versus the more typical black fruit tones of Obsidian Ridge. This is a large but still friendly wine that would love to rest in the cellar for a decade.

Critical Acclaim

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WE 92
Wine Enthusiast
A monument to tannin, but densely concentrated, too, this full-bodied, smoky-smelling, deeply colored and potent-tasting wine wraps a thick blanket of astringency around dense cranberry, blueberry and black-olive flavors. It’s so young and tight that it should be served only with indulgent rich food to counter the bite. Best, and potentially great, after 2022. Cellar Selection.
RP 90
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
I also liked their proprietary red, the 2013 Proprietary Red Half Mile, which is 75% Cabernet Sauvignon and a whopping 25% Petit Verdot. The wine spent two years in barrel and, like their other wines, has an even more opaque purple color with loads of tannin. Because of the tannin this seems like a long-term proposition, as Petit Verdot mellows somewhat. It is a masculine, primordial style of red wine that needs 2-3 years of bottle age and should keep for 15 or more years.
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Obsidian Ridge

Obsidian Ridge

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Obsidian Ridge, Red Hills, Lake County, North Coast, California
Video of winery
Planted 2,600 feet high on the Mayacamas range north of Napa Valley, Obsidian ridge Vineyards grows mountain fruit. The steep slopes at this altitude are reddened by iron rich volcanic soils and littered with black shards of obsidian. Here in the Red Hills of Lake county the distinctive soils and mountain climate grow varietally vibrant and powerfully structured Cabernet Sauvignon.

Red Hills

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Located within the greater Clear Lake appellation, the Red Hills AVA is perhaps the hottest spot right now in Lake County for new Cabernet Sauvignon vineyards. Recognizing the potential of its volcanic and obsidian heavy soils, many respected growers are flocking to the area. Andy Beckstoffer, a leader in escalating the quality and recognition of Napa Valley, has already invested heavily in the area.

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 Washington, 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.

MSW30192761_2013 Item# 312438