2008 Ridge Vineyards "Estate" Santa Cruz Mountains Cabernet Sauvignon

SKU #1069467 94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate is compelling. Where to start? An expressive bouquet redolent of sweet herbs, tobacco and incense leads to a gorgeous tapestry of dark red fruit. The Estate is drop-dead gorgeous, with the silkiest of tannins that frame an extraordinary finish. This has to be one of the most compelling values in California Cabernet. (AG)  (8/2011)

92 points James Suckling

 This is a beautiful traditional California Cabernet blend with mushroom, berry and dried herbs that follow to a full body, with soft and velvety tannins and a long and delicious finish. A joy to taste and drink. Made from 75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot, 3% Petit Verdot and 2% Cabernet Franc.  (5/2012)

92 points Wine Spectator

 This is big, and loaded with jammy blackberry fruit, but there's a sense of elegance and focus in its full-bodied flavors. Layered notes of licorice, caramel, toast and sage lead to a finish of firm but ripe tannins.  (6/2011)

91 points Wine & Spirits

 Eric Baugher selects the more accessible lots of cabernet for this estate wine, which carries the Monte Bello Vineyard name on the label for the first time in 2008. This vintage includes Merlot (20 percent), Petit Verdot (3) and Cabernet Franc (2), which helps to bring out the fresh scent of thyme and forest floor. The black fruit and dark herb scents come forward as the oak influence recedes with air. Suited to several years of aging, to serve with roast game.  (10/2011)

90 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Vivid ruby. Oak-spicy aromas of redcurrant, dried cherry and cola, with a hint of smokiness in the background. Fleshy and smooth in the mouth, offering juicy dark berry flavors and mounting vanilla and mocha notes. Finishes with good smoky persistence and resonating cherry and vanilla notes. Gentle tannins make for accessibility but also suggest that this will repay at least five years of patience. This wine, made from the lots that are more accessible and elegantly structured than those destined for Ridge's flagship Monte Bello bottling...  (5/2011)

90 points Wine Enthusiast

 *Cellar Selection* A lovely Cabernet, dry and rich in flavor, showing lots of class. It's certainly ripe, with blackberry and cherry flavors that veer into currants. There's also a minerally tang. The wine is immature now, with hard tannins. Think of it as a junior version of Ridge's Montebello bottling, not as long lived, but still deserving of 6-8 years in a cool cellar.  (9/2011)

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Price: $59.99
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Staff Image By: Kyle Kurani | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 9/14/2011 | Send Email
Sourced from the same vineyard that its big brother Monte Bello comes from, the Estate Cab from Ridge is one of best values in California Cabernet. The 2008 does not disappoint in the least, dark and brooding fruit is balanced against beautiful minerality and savory notes of leather and spice. A pleasure to drink now and will continue to be stunning for the next 10 years.

Additional Information:


Cabernet Sauvignon and Blends

- Cabernet Sauvignon has come a long way from its role as a blending varietal, however dominant, in the wines of Bordeaux. Today it is the most planted red varietal in the world. Identified as a descendent of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc, the late-ripening Cabernet Sauvignon needs to be planted in warmer climates to fully ripen. Its small berries can easily be identified for their distinctive blue color, thick skins and high tannins. And while the varietal has its own definitive characteristics: green pepper-like aromas and black currant flavors among them, it is perhaps most prized for its ability to convey terroir, vintage and winemaking. A relatively new varietal, Cabernet Sauvignon started making inroads into the wines of the Médoc and Graves in the late-18th century. Today it is also dominant in the up-and-coming Entre-Deux-Mers region of Bordeaux and can also be found in Southwest France. It is the companion varietal to Sangiovese in Italy's Super Tuscans and is planted all over Europe, stretching to lesser-known winegrowing regions like Russia and Lebanon. In the Americas Cabernet Sauvignon has found champions in every nook and cranny of California and among winemakers in Washington, where it complements plantings of Merlot. In South America, Cab thrives in Chile, but can also be found in smaller amounts in Argentina and even in Mexico.

United States

- When people consider domestic wine, they normally think about the state of California. The fine viticultural Region within California, including the Napa Valley, Sonoma, Santa Cruz Mountains, Mendocino and Santa Barbara, are capable of growing grapes of world-class quality. But there's plenty of fabulous wine coming from other states, too. Oregon, Washington and New York are also causing eyebrows (and glassware) to be raised around the world. Click for a list of bestselling items from the United States.


- With the explosive growth that California's wine industry has seen the past several years, it's easy to view winemaking and grape growing in the Golden State as a recent phenomenon. And while it's true that California's viticultural history is brief compared to several European countries, this state's roots date back well over 200 years. Due to the enormous response to California wine within the United States and worldwide, there are thousands of excellent and diverse wines being produced within the state each year. For our entire selection of California wines, please visit this link.
Specific Appellation:

Santa Cruz Mountains

- Vineyards dot the valleys and ridges of this coastal AVA just south of San Francisco. Microclimates make it difficult to generalize, and vineyards are frequently separated by acres of forests and meadowlands (not to mention entire towns!), but this is nonetheless known as a cooler-climate zone ideal for pinot noir. Ridge is doubtless the most famous local producer, with its cabernet blend, Monte Bello, named after a Santa Cruz mountain peak. High-quality, low-production chardonnay and some Rhône varietals prosper as well.
Alcohol Content (%): 13.5