2010 Clos du Val Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
*One Star* Leading with comparatively restrained aromas of red cherries and raspberries along with subtle accents of wet clay, herbs and a bit of vanilla-bean oak, this wine follows with precise, if slightly scaled-down, flavors that fully reflect the nose. Slender, but neither thin nor at all lacking in character, it is an insistent, very mannerly, well-tailored take on Cabernet that should come into its own some four or five years hence.
The winery’s basic Cabernet is ripe with cherries and blackberries, with a veneer of oak and an edge of tangy acidity. It’s not an ager, but it’s a polished wine, similar to the 2009.
From the winery: "Clos Du Val, French for 'small vineyard estate of a small valley,' was founded in 1972 in the now legendary Stags Leap District by Franco-American entrepreneur John Goelet. After a worldwide search to purchase vineyard properties from which to craft world-class wines, 150 acres in Stags Leap and 180 acres in Carneros were chosen, solidifying Clos Du Val’s iconic stature and formidable place in Napa Valley history. Today, for Clos Du Val Winemaker Kristy Melton, it is the bounty from these renowned vineyards that acts as the foundation for the distinctive, terroir-driven wines of balance and elegance for which Clos Du Val is known."