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Vine Cliff Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2005

Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
  • WW92
  • WE90
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Winemaker Notes

The aroma has an array of fruits with plum, blue berries, red currants, cranberries, and baked cherries. Cinnamon spice, bay leaf, cocoa and white chocolate add depth and complexity. The palate has bright sweet fruit at entry with plum, cherry and blueberry fruits. The palate texture is rich, full bodied and powerful. Nuances of mocha chocolate and molasses add oak complexity which lingers with hints of cedar on the finish.

The Vine Cliff Winery Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon is a wine crafted from our Estate Vineyards in Oakville and Calistoga. In 2005 the Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon blend was a mix of approximately 5% Calistoga Pickett Ranch fruit and 95% Oakville Estate fruit. The Calistoga fruit contributes floral aromatics, mouth feel and finesse to the blend, while the Oakville fruit imparts structure and concentration. The 2005 growing season began in late spring with cool rainy weather. The long summer was very moderate and encouraged extra vine growth and increased cluster and berry size. The extra growth required constant work in the vineyard thinning shoots, thinning clusters, removing excess leaves and top canes. The long cool season was perfect for developing grapes with good maturity and flavors and with the sugar levels coming in slightly lower than in past vintages. We look forward to the resulting wines having great elegance and balance.

Critical Acclaim

WW 92
Wilfred Wong of Wine.com

Ripe plum, anise and cherry juice aromas. Tasty blueberry fruit with peppery tannins and spicy clove notes. The close is lengthy with plenty of juicy fruit as well as drying mineral notes. A well-structured, slow-opening wine that keeps improving in the glass.

WE 90
Wine Enthusiast

Light in body for a Napa Cab but extremely elegant, this polished wine is fully ready to drink now. A blend of Oakville and Calistoga fruit, it’s rich in cherry, red and black currant and Dr. Pepper flavors.

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Vine Cliff

Vine Cliff Winery

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Vine Cliff Winery, , California
Vine Cliff
Nestled in a quiet canyon above the Silverado Trail in the world famous Napa Valley stand the breathtaking vineyards of Vine Cliff Winery. Known for rich, full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignons from the treasured Oakville Appellation and bold Chardonnays from the acclaimed Carneros District, Vine Cliff Winery prides itself on small lots of intensely flavored, hand-made wines.

Columbia Valley

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A large and geographically diverse AVA responsible for a wide variety of wine styles...

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A large and geographically diverse AVA responsible for a wide variety of wine styles, the Columbia Valley AVA is home to 99% of Washington State’s total vineyard area. A small section of the AVA extends into northern Oregon as well. Because of its vast size, it is necessarily divided into several distinctive sub-AVAs, including Walla Walla Valley and Yakima Valley—which is further split into three more even smaller AVAs. A region this size will of course have varied microclimates, but on the whole it experiences cold winters and long, dry growing seasons. Frost is a common risk during winter and spring. The towering Cascade mountain range creates a rain shadow, keeping the valley relatively rain-free throughout the year, necessitating irrigation from the Columbia River. The lack of humidity combined with sandy soils allows for vines to be grown on their own rootstock, as phylloxera is not a serious concern.

Red wines make up the majority of production in the Columbia Valley. Cabernet Sauvignon is the dominant variety here, where it produces wines with a pleasant balance of dark fruit and herbs. Wines made from Merlot are typically supple, with sweet red fruit and sometimes a hint of chocolate or mint. Syrah tends to be savory and Old-World-leaning, with a wide range of possible fruit flavors and plenty of spice. The most planted white varieties are Chardonnay and Riesling, the styles of which depend on the warmth of the site. Citrus and green apple are common to both in cooler sites, while warmer vineyards will produce riper, fleshier stone fruit flavors.

Semillon

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A shy but noble variety with considerable structure, depth, and length...

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A shy but noble variety with considerable structure, depth, and length, beneath Sémillon’s aloof exterior lays a singular, uncompromising white with the power and intensity to create wines that can last and improve for several decades. It is the perfect partner to tame Sauvignon Blanc's wild side in its most important outpost of Bordeaux. Sémillon especially shines in Sauternes, one of the world’s greatest sweet wines, with highly concentrated flavors of honey and dried apricots. While Sémillon is not the most fashionable grape in the rest of the wine world, it has had great success in Australia, where it can produce elegant, complex dry wines.

In the Glass

Sémillon is most notable for its oily texture and significant palate weight. In youthful dry wines, it expresses subtle aromas of lemon, green apple, pear, and stone fruit. Aged or sweet Sémillon wines show more complex character of lanolin, beeswax, honeysuckle, ginger, saffron, vanilla, or toast.

Perfect Pairings

Thanks to its moderate acidity, this fairly full-bodied wine can stand up to pretty boldly flavored food. Think lightly spiced Asian or Indian white meat or fish dishes, or anything with cinnamon, clove, or star anise. It’s also great with autumnal vegetables like kabocha squash, yam, or potato. Botrytised Sémillon, as in Sauternes, is a perfectly decadent pairing with foie gras.

Sommelier Secret

Sémillon was once the most common variety in South Africa—so common, in fact, that in 1822, when 93% of the country’s vineyard area was planted with it, it was simply referred to as Wyndruif, or “wine grape.”

VCWCAB2005_2005 Item# 95989

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