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Pahlmeyer Napa Valley Proprietary Red 1996

Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
  • RP95
  • WS90
  • JS97
  • WS95
  • RP94
  • RP96
  • JS96
  • WS93
  • JS96
  • RP94
  • WS93
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Winemaker Notes

This wine shares some of the chocolatey characteristics of the two Merlot vintages, but there is more cassis liqueur, blackberries, blueberries, and pain grille (toast) notes in this lavishly rich, flamboyant proprietary red.Full-bodied, marvelously concentrated and extremely well-balanced, this wine's acidity, tannin, and high alcohol are completely buried beneath the complex fruit and extract of this profound offering.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 95
The Wine Advocate

The 1996 Proprietary Red (a blend of 73% Cabernet Sauvignon with the balance Malbec, Petit Verdot, Merlot, and Cabernet Franc) is not a very weighty (14.3% alcohol) offering. It has become more delineated with a year of bottle age, offering up classic creme de cassis, smoked meat, coffee, prune, and toasty new oak scents. Concentrated, with fabulously high extract, sweet tannin, and full body, this wine has an elegant feel on the palate, but is still a blockbuster.

WS 90
Wine Spectator

Fresh aromas of ripe black cherry, currant and berry are enticing, turning rich and complex on the palate, with fine depth, balance and persistence. Impessive for its vitality and purity of flavor. The best of four bottles.

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Pahlmeyer

Pahlmeyer

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Pahlmeyer, , California
Pahlmeyer
Jayson Pahlmeyer has been producing highly sought-after wines since 1986. It began with Jayson's dream to make world-class Bordeaux-style wine from Napa Valley. Pahlmeyer's estate vineyard - Waters Rance - is situated at 2100 feet in the Atlas Peak appellation of Napa Valley. It is the key source for their Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, Malbec and Chardonnay. Jayson's passion eventually led him to the Sonoma Coast, where less than seven miles and two ridges from the Pacific Ocean, he planted Wayfarer Farm, their key source for Pinot Noir.

Bordeaux Blends

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One of the world’s most classic and popular styles of red wine, Bordeaux-inspired blends have spread from their homeland in France to nearly every corner of the New World, especially in California, Washington, and Australia. Typically based on either Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot and supported by Cabernet Franc, Malbec, and/or Petit Verdot, these are sometimes referred to in the US as “Meritage” blends. In Bordeaux itself, Cabernet Sauvignon dominates in wines from the Left Bank of the Gironde river, while the Right Bank focuses on Merlot. Often, blends from outside the region are classified as being inspired by one or the other.

In the Glass

Cabernet-based, Left-Bank-styled wines are typically more tannic and structured, while Merlot-based wines modeled after the Right Bank are softer and suppler. Cabernet Franc can add herbal notes, while Malbec and Petit Verdot contribute color and structure. Wines from Bordeaux can be bold and fruit-forward or restrained and earthy, while New World facsimiles tend to emulate the former style. In general, Bordeaux red blends can have aromas and flavors of black currant, cedar, plum, graphite, and violet, with more red fruit flavors when Merlot makes up a high proportion of the blend.

Perfect Pairings

Since Bordeaux red blends are often quite structured and tannic, they pair best with hearty, flavorful, and fatty meat dishes. Any type of steak makes for a classic pairing. Equally welcome with these wines would be beef brisket, pot roast, braised lamb, or smoked duck.

Sommelier Secret

While the region of Bordeaux is limited to a select few approved grape varieties, the New World is free to experiment. Bordeaux blends in California may include Syrah, Petite Sirah, Zinfandel, or virtually any other grape deemed worthy by the winemaker. In Australia, Shiraz is a common component.

POE34346_1996 Item# 34346

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