2009 Anakota "Helena Montana" Knights Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Deep ruby. Knockout nose combines dark berries, licorice and a powerful violet element. Then wonderfully suave and fine-grained, with great energy and lift to the middle palate. The strong floral quality carries straight through to the ripely tannic finish. Comes across today as more feminine and more subtle than the Helena Dakota, and surprisingly approachable at this early stage of its development. These wines offer lovely examples of Pierre Seillan's winemaking, at a lower price than his otherworldly Verite bottlings.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon Helena Montana Vineyard comes across as one of the most tannic, backward wines I tasted from any of the four vintages I was looking at during my extensive trip to Napa Valley in late August and early September. Very extracted with high tannins (almost excessive), this 2009 is built like an old style Bordeaux with lots of red and black fruits, graphite and noticeable oak. Forget it for a long, long time. Made by Kendall-Jackson’s Bordelais winemaker Pierre Seillan, these wines represent the pinnacle of what they hope to achieve in high elevation sites in Knights Valley, an area increasingly being utilized by Napa producers given the great success Peter Michael and Kendall-Jackson have had in this region. (RP)
The 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon Helena Montana Vineyard has the big, broad shoulders typical of this wine, but in this vintage there is a little more fruit than normal, which makes the wines incredibly accessible at this young stage. Rich, voluptuous and impeccably layered, the 2009 shows great balance and class. The level of tannin finesse and pure elegance are both above the 1988. Hints of mocha, espresso and violets wrap around the juicy finish. This round, enveloping Cabernet is sexy and unbelievably sexy.
**Cellar Selection** This wine is inky black in color and insanely tannic. Yet it’s massive in blackberries, and clearly of pedigreed origins. It should begin to blossom by 2018, and develop for years beyond.