2012 Beringer "Private Reserve" Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon (Previously $140)
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Revealing the great blending skills of Beringer’s winemaking team, the 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon Private Reserve is a winner. Having purchased Private Reserves for many years, I can attest that they age incredibly well. The 1991, one of the great successes of that vintage, is still aging beautifully at nearly 25 years of age. The sensational 2012 (10,000 cases) boasts an opaque purple color along with abundant aromas of charcoal, burning embers, creme de cassis, chocolate, blackberries and licorice. The long, complex, compelling, full-bodied texture along with terrific purity and a savory, rich mouthfeel result in a classic, quintessential Napa Cabernet Sauvignon to drink now and over the next 20-25 years. For its size and prominence, the St. Helena flagship Beringer winery does a remarkable job with the quality of its offerings. They have been fortunate to choose a brilliant line-up of chief winemakers, from Ed Sbragia, to Laurie Hook. The following group of wines, coming primarily from 2012 for the reds, and 2012 and 2013 for the whites, is one of the strongest I have tasted with them. That is reassuring when you consider the enormous size of the umbrella Treasury Estates that owns Beringer. (RP)
This is powerful with super polished tannins and a wonderful balance of fruit and acidity. Lots of blackberry, sweet tobacco and fresh mushroom undertones. Layered and structured. Needs at least three to four years to come around but already great. Exciting, harking back to the great vintages of this wine.
The flagship 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon Private Reserve is impressive. Voluptuous, powerful and racy, the 2012 is backed up by plenty of underlying structure. Today the flavors are quite primary, but there is good intensity in the red and purplish-toned fruit. With a production of 10,000 cases, this sumptuous beauty should be relatively easy to find. I expect the 2012 will drink well pretty much out of the gate. (AG)
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
(14.9% alcohol; 52% Howell Mountain, 24% St. Helena, 14% Rutherford, 7% Spring Mountain and 3% Mt. Veeder): Saturated ruby to the rim. Still slightly stunted by the bottling last September, showing mostly cedar and oak spice on the nose, plus hints of primary dark fruits. Plush, fleshy and deep but youthfully monolithic for all its sweetness. Shows a strong chocolatey ripeness but this very generous wine needs at least several years in the cellar to burn off some of its baby fat and assume its adult shape. Finishes with serious but noble tannins, a note of licorice and strong lingering sweetness. 93+? (ST)
A classy style that combines firm, ripe, dusty blackberry, currant and wild berry flavors with dried herb, cedar and tobacco notes. On the finish, the tannins are fine-grained and the flavors flow through in an elegant manner. Drink now through 2029. (JL)