2009 Clos du Val Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

SKU #1088628 90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon Stags' Leap District (Napa Valley) is quite pretty in this vintage. A warm, resonant bouquet laced with espresso, plums and spices meld into expressive dark berries as this mid-weight, polished Cabernet opens up in the glass. Hints of raspberry jam, rose petals and mocha are layered into the persistent finish. Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon is rarely inexpensive, but this is about as good as it gets for the money. Anticipated maturity: 2014-2024.  (12/ 2012)

K&L Notes

Quoting Connoissuers' Guide: "Clos du Val has long eschewed wines of high ripeness and has been making subtle Cabernets long before the recent hubbub about lower-alcohol wines." (04/2012)

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Price: $24.99

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By: Gary Westby |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 1/16/2013  | Send Email
It has been 41 years since John Goelethires and Bernard Portet harvested their first vintage of Clos du Val in 1972. Since then, their Cabernet's have gained fame by showing very well in the original Paris tasting, winning the rematch in 1986 and still showing very well in the third edition. These wines have always showed an incredible ability to age, and I have never been disappointed by a bottle of Clos Du Val Napa Valley Cabernet whether it was from the 90's, 80's or even the 70's. Before the harvest in 2009 a large investment was made at the winery and new de-stemming and crushing equipment was installed. This investment shows through in this bottle, which is much more approachable on release than past vintages have been. That being said, this richer Clos du Val will no doubt develop beautifully over the next 10 years. If you are looking for something affordable, food friendly that has that Napa Cab taste that is impossible to imitate, you have found it!
Top Value! Drink from 2013 to 2019

By: Bryan Brick |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 1/16/2013  | Send Email
One of my favorite trends in the wine industry right now is the number of historic wineries that are returning to the quality and focus that their reputation was built on. Over the years, especially in the ‘90s, many of the larger, big name wineries thought it would be a good idea to make as much wine as they could. Wineries were purchasing fruit from every nook and cranny of California and hitting massive numbers in case production. If you asked them the quality of their wine was the same, if not better, but how could that be the case when wineries were jumping production by thousands of cases? Many of the wineries realized, for one reason or another, that that line of thinking may not be the best approach for the image, or quality, of their brand. In recent years I have felt like numerous historic wineries have vastly improved their wines and a perfect example of this is the 2009 Clos Du Val Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. If you’ve ever had the CDV Cabs from the ‘70s and ‘80s you know what sort of amazing wine they can produce and while I don’t think this wine will last 20-30 years it is certainly a tremendous effort for a relatively affordable wine. For under $30 here you get a classically styled Napa Valley Cabernet with a pretty nose full of green olive, sandalwood, tanbark, cassis and cocoa powder. This is not a bombastic wine full of glycerin and sweet, confectionary oak but a wine of precision and place. With its medium weighted frame and seamless flavors of red currant, Kalamata olives, cedar and fresh sage this harkens back to when Cabs were made more for dinner than impressing your boss. Kudos to the folks at Clos Du Val for going back to what made their winery so damn fantastic in the first place!

By: David Driscoll |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 1/15/2013  | Send Email
We all love it when we discover something small, quaint, and unknown that turns out to be the steal of the month. At the same time, I find it to be even more exciting when a large, commonly-found, brand name comes out with something that really makes you turn your head. At our most recent tasting this Clos Du Val Cabernet shocked the heck out of me. It's delicious. Full of dark fruit and fleshy cab flavor, but totally restrained, balanced, and with subtle yet substantial tannins. Wow. What a deal.

By: Keith Wollenberg |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 1/15/2013  | Send Email
This is classic old-style Cabernet, but with modern clean winemaking. BRAVO! if you do not want 15% alcohol, and over-ripe grapes (which some in Napa have done to chase high scores), but you do like French Oak and balanced Cabernet that is food-friendly at a reasonable price, this is a terrific choice. As always, the fruit comes from the Stag's Leap side of the valley, always my favorite for its better acidity and focus. Grill me a steak and open this bottle, and I'll be happy!

By: Trey Beffa |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 1/15/2013  | Send Email
One of the best Clos du Val Cabernet's I have tasted in a while! Clos du Val has always leaned on the more restrained style. While still holding true to that style, the 2009 is balanced out with a riper fruit component then the past couple of vintages. The wine shows a seamless elegance and freshness with a good backbone. Should age well but it is drinking excellent right now.

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Varietal:

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.
Country:

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.
Sub-Region:

California

- 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:

Napa Valley

- America's most famous wine region, which encompasses a varied geographical territory running about 20 miles long from the San Francisco Bay northward to the foot of Mount St. Helena. Napa's great diversity, both in terms of climate and terroir, has led to the creation of a number of smaller AVAs like Stags Leap District, Rutherford, Howell Mountain, Oakville and Mount Veeder, among others. Cabernet and chardonnay still reign supreme, but just about everything under the sun is grown in Napa Valley, in quality levels ranging from $2 jug wine to $500 a bottle California cab.
Alcohol Content (%): 13.5