A Top Drawer Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley

A Top Drawer Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley

These 'flavors are rock solid yet somehow silky and refined'

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2014 was such a wonderful year for Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. The structure, pinpoint texture and focused flavors of this vintage year are definitely worth shouting about. But if you’re seeking a bruiser, “look-at-me” style, then you won’t want today’s offering. The Hess Collection, maker of today’s wine, sources grapes grown between 600 and 1,120 feet in the Mount Veeder district. It exemplifies thrilling fruit in a medium-bodied style that looks towards balance and grace rather than overly extracted knock-out drops. The Hess Collection property experienced a major earthquake in 2014(!), but its wines came shining through brightly.

2014 The Hess Collection, Mount Veeder, Cabernet Sauvignon $70 srp

A deep purple, extracted color. Dense and smokey notes greet you with concentrated blackberry and black currant goodness. Elements of mint, mountain underbrush, tobacco and graphite join in the spicy bouquet as the wine breathes. Flavors are rock solid yet somehow silky and refined. Luscious cherry and plum flavors are smooth and balanced, with judicious oak and a grainy texture on the finish, giving the wine lift and delicacy. (81% Cabernet Sauvignon, 16% Malbec and 3% Petit Verdot) Drink now, with plenty of aeration, through 2025.

93/100 points

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Arturo Ciompi
Trained as a classical clarinetist and conductor, Arturo plied his trade for many years in New York, performing with the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, New York City Opera, the American Symphony and countless chamber music groups. While living in Durham, Arturo became the wine manager at two iconic gourmet stores: Fowler’s in Durham and Southern Season in Chapel Hill. He had a wine spot on NPR in the ’90s and has been a continuously published wine journalist since 1997. He has won national awards for his work and is currently writing for Durham Magazine and its weekly blog, “Wine Wednesdays”. In addition, he loves teaching the clarinet. Read more on his website.