2001 Cardinale Napa-Sonoma Bordeaux Blend

SKU #1012268 95 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 One of the flagship wines of the late Jess Jackson’s Artisans and Estates limited production offerings is the 2001 Cardinale, a blend of 73% Cabernet Sauvignon and 27% Merlot from some of the finest Jackson-owned vineyards on Mt. Veeder, Keyes on Howell Mountain, Alexander Mountain Estate as well as purchased fruit from the Stagecoach, To-Kalon and Peter Michael vineyards. This sensational, layered, opulent, voluptuous 2001 (the last vintage in which any fruit from Sonoma was used in the final blend) boasts a dense purple color along with a big, rich perfume of kirsch, creme de cassis, subtle toasty oak and incense. Full-bodied, round and generously endowed with an endearing corpulence, this fleshy, full throttle, juicy Cabernet Sauvignon-dominated 2001 can be drunk now or cellared for another 15+ years. (RP)  (6/2011)

93 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 ($135; a blend of 73% cabernet sauvignon and 27% merlot; this will be the last bi-county blend under this label) Good full medium ruby. Captivating aromas of black and red raspberry, violet, bitter chocolate and sexy oak. Supersweet, lush and highly concentrated, with exotic flavors of black raspberry and milk chocolate. Very suave, inviting wine, finishing with very fine tannins, superb length, and a note of espresso. Impressive and utterly seductive.  (6/2004)

K&L Notes

Cardinale, located in the heart of Napa Valley’s world-renowned Oakville District, crafts a single Cabernet Sauvignon from each vintage. The wine is a limited-production blend from Napa Valley’s most recognized mountain appellations including Mt. Veeder, Spring Mountain, Howell Mountain and Diamond Mountain. Every bottle reveals the artistic sensibility of Winemaker Christopher Carpenter. Cardinale is sophisticated, powerful, and a true expression of Napa.

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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.