Pride Mountain Vineyards Reserve Claret (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2003 Front Label
Pride Mountain Vineyards Reserve Claret (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2003 Front Label

Pride Mountain Vineyards Reserve Claret (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2003

  • RP97
  • WE95
1500ML / 14.4% ABV
Other Vintages
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1500ML / 14.4% ABV

Winemaker Notes

“Big, beefy, rich flavors and superb intensity,” said Robert Parker, referring to the 2003 Reserve Claret. Loaded with rich, ripe cherries, cassis, chocolate and espresso character, this outstanding and much sought after Merlot-based blend (2/3 Merlot and 1/3 Cabernet Sauvignon), is proof that fine wine connoisseurs know not to take advice on what to drink from the movies!

Blend: 67% Merlot, 33% Cabernet Sauvignon

Critical Acclaim

All Vintages
RP 97
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2003 Reserve Claret is a blend of 67% Merlot and 33% Cabernet Sauvignon that achieved 14.4% alcohol. An exquisite candidate for wine of the vintage, it comes from a vineyard high on the summit of Spring Mountain. Eighty-three percent of the fruit comes from Sonoma and the rest from Napa County as the vineyard sits astride the county lines. Its dark plum/garnet color reveals a slight lightening at the edge. A beautiful nose of cedarwood, forest floor, red and black currants, kirsch and plum is followed by a full-bodied wine with great freshness, a rich, textured mouthfeel and sensational concentration with no heaviness. This is an uplifting, quintessential mountain Cabernet Sauvignon that outperforms the vintage. Just entering its plateau of full maturity, it can be drunk now and over the next decade.
WE 95
Wine Enthusiast
If you’re lucky enough to try this with Pride’s reserve Cab, which is 100% varietal, you’ll find this one fleshier and meatier. Based on Merlot, it shows a voluptuous fatness, a chocolate-covered cherry candy immediacy, that makes it drinkable now. At the same time, it has big, dusty, mouth-coating tannins. Drink now, with decanting, or cellar for 10 years.Editors' Choice.
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Pride Mountain Vineyards

Pride Mountain Vineyards

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Pride Mountain Vineyards, California
Pride Mountain Vineyards Winery Image
Pride Mountain Vineyards is situated on the Summit Ranch, one of Napa Valley's oldest grape producers atop Spring Mountain. With over 120 years of viticulture documented there, Jim and Carolyn Pride purchased Summit Ranch and their first vintage premiered in 1991. Today, Pride Mountain Vineyards produces Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Chardonnay, Viognier and limited bottlings of Syrah and Sangiovese.
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Reaching up California's coastline and into its valleys north of San Francisco, the North Coast AVA includes six counties: Marin, Solano, Napa, Sonoma, Mendocino and Lake. While Napa and Sonoma enjoy most of the glory, the rest produce no shortage of quality wines in an intriguing and diverse range of styles.

Climbing up the state's rugged coastline, the chilly Marin County, just above the City and most of Sonoma County, as well as Mendocino County on the far north end of the North Coast successfully grow cool-climate varieties like Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and in some spots, Riesling. Inland Lake County, on the other hand, is considerably warmer, and Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel and Sauvignon Blanc produce some impressive wines with affordable price tags.

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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 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.

Tasting Notes for Bordeaux Blends

Bordeaux Blends are dry, red wines and generally have aromas and flavors of black currant, black cherry plum, graphite, cedar and violet. 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.

Perfect Food Pairings for Bordeaux Blends

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 Secrets for Bordeaux Blends

While the region of Bordeaux is limited to a select few approved grape varieties in specified percentages, the New World is free to experiment. Bordeaux blends in California may include equal amounts of Cabernet Franc and Malbec, for example. Occassionally a winemaker might add a small percentage of a non-Bordeaux variety, such as Syrah or Petite Sirah for a desired result.

SIM152009_2003 Item# 152009

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