2011 O'Shaughnessy Howell Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon

SKU #1175195 92 points Vinous

 O'Shaughnessy's 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain is beautiful. The tannins are remarkably polished and sophisticated for a Howell Mountain Cabernet. Sweet red berries, tobacco, licorice and cedar are all woven into a silky, refined finish. There is plenty of Howell Mountain salinity in the glass, but not quite the power and energy that are typical of this wine, or the best Howell Mountain Cabernets in this vintage. Overall, the 2011 is a bit on the lighter side of things, but it is quite pretty in its own way. (AG) 92+  (11/2013)

91 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Full ruby-red. Aromas of blueberry, blackberry, creosote and new oak, lifted by a violet topnote. Spicy and penetrating, with peppery acidity giving shape and grip to the flavors of dark berries, black cherry, licorice, bitter chocolate and pine resin. Nicely ripe, savory wine with slightly dry tannins that call for a few years of patience. Winemaker Sean Capiaux told me that minimal acidification was needed in 2011 and that he added back about 2% of 2012 wine. He left the Cabernet Franc and Carmenere out of the blend. 91(+?) points  (6/2014)

90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Betty O’Shaughnessy and her winemaker, Sean Capiaux, have fashioned a 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain (82% Cabernet Sauvignon and the rest Merlot, Malbec and Petit Verdot) that is soft, round, juicy and succulent. Its deep ruby/purple color is followed by a wine with velvety tannins, and lots of mulberry, blueberry and black raspberry fruit intermixed with a hint of wet rocks. This delicious, fruit-forward, supple-textured 2011 can be consumed over the next decade. (RP)  (10/2013)

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Price: $79.99
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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 (%): 14.8