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Stag's Leap Wine Cellars Cask 23 Cabernet Sauvignon 2005

Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
  • CG90
14.5% ABV
  • RP96
  • WS95
  • JD97
  • RP96
  • V96
  • W&S95
  • JS94
  • WE94
  • WS93
  • RP99
  • W&S96
  • WE92
  • WS90
  • RP96
  • D95
  • WS93
  • WE93
  • RP92
  • D90
  • RP94
  • WE94
  • WS91
  • WE97
  • TP95
  • W&S92
  • RP93
  • WE92
  • W&S92
  • CG92
  • WE91
  • WS95
  • WS91
  • WS93
  • WE92
  • WE95
  • RP90
  • RP96
  • WS92
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14.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

A classic example of tremendous power and great finesse. The wine presents a symphony of aromas from sweet black fruit to cigar box, from savory spices of clove, allspice and licorice to dried herbs and flowers, even a touch of minerality. This complexity carries over to the palate with flavors that are reminiscent of spiced chutney. The bold flavors are wrapped in a blanket of supple tannins and persist through an extraordinarily long finish. It's a wine sure to enhance any dining experience. Savor it alongside venison chops with blackberry compote, bacon-wrapped quail, or a selection of aged artisan cheeses.

Critical Acclaim

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CG 90
Connoisseurs' Guide
Almost sure to raise controversy with its involving aromas of leather, roasted coffee, scorched chocolate and herbs, this unique offering smacks ever so faintly of Syrah and may not fit the fruity Cabernet model, but its complexity is beyond any argument. It is smooth and supple in feel with plenty of palatal weight and a fine sense of polish, and its neatly fit spine of firm structural tannins is precisely the stuff of fine Cabernet. A few years of age should make a good thing better, and it has room enough for ten years of growth.
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Stag's Leap Wine Cellars

Stag's Leap Wine Cellars

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Stag's Leap Wine Cellars, Napa Valley, California
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Considered one of the "first growths" of Napa Valley, Stag's Leap Wine Cellars produces renowned Cabernet Sauvignon from its historic Stags Leap District estate vineyards. Founded in 1970, the winery brought international recognition to California winemaking and the Napa Valley when the 1973 S.L.V. Cabernet Sauvignon won the now famout 1976 Paris Tasting, also known as the "Judgement of Paris." Stag's Leap Wine Cellars' three estate-grown Cabernet Sauvignons - CASK 23, S.L.V. and Fay - are among the most highly regarded and collected Cabernet Sauvignons worldwide. The wines are fashioned to express richness balanced by elegant restraint, an approach often described as "an iron fist in a velvet glove."

Napa Valley

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One of the world's most highly regarded regions for wine production as well as tourism, the Napa Valley was responsible for bringing worldwide recognition to California winemaking. In the 1960s, a few key wine families settled the area and hedged their bets on the valley's world-class winemaking potential—and they were right.

The Napa wine industry really took off in the 1980s, when producers scooped up vineyard lands and planted vines throughout the county. A number of wineries emerged, and today Napa is home to hundreds of producers ranging from boutique to corporate. Cabernet Sauvignon is definitely the grape of choice here, with many winemakers also focusing on Bordeaux blends. Napa whites are usually Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.

Within the Napa Valley lie many smaller sub-AVAs that claim specific characteristics based on situation, slope and soil. Farthest south and coolest from the influence of the San Pablo Bay is Carneros, followed by Coombsville to its northeast and then Yountville, Oakville and Rutherford. Above those are the warm St. Helena and the valley's newest and hottest AVA, Calistoga. These areas follow the valley floor and are known generally for creating rich, dense, complex and smooth reds with good aging potential. The mountain sub appellations, nestled on the slopes overlooking the valley AVAs, include Stags Leap District, Atlas Peak, Chiles Valley (farther east), Howell Mountain, Mt. Veeder, Spring Mountain District and Diamond Mountain District. Wines from the mountain regions are often more structured and firm, benefiting from a lot of 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 enjoys success all over the globe. Inherently high in tannins and acidity, the best bottlings of Cabernet can age beautifully, with the ability to last fifty years or more. Cabernet Sauvignon flourishes in temperate climates like Bordeaux's Medoc region and forms the base of the Medoc reds, which are typically mostly Cabernet with Merlot and smaller amounts of some combination of Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Petit Verdot. (Enjoying a great deal of success in various regions around the world, this blend is now globally referred to as a Bordeaux Blend.) Cabernet Sauvignon from the Napa Valley is responsible for some of the world’s most prestigious, age-worthy 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 is typically blended to soften tannins and add complexity. In warmer regions like California Washington, Argentina, Chile 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 profiling revealed the grape to be a spontaneous crossing of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc which took place in 17th century southwestern France.

MPS89204_2005 Item# 89204