2014 McGah "Scarlett" Rutherford Zinfandel

SKU #1274784 94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon McGah Family Vineyard tips the scales at 14.9% natural alcohol and is a cuvée of 425 cases from their Rutherford site. This was all aged in Darnajou and Taransaud barrels, which seems to be the modus operandi for high-quality producers these days. With a nice structured mouthfeel for 2014 and loads of creme de cassis, black chocolate, espresso roast and coffee, this wine from the vineyard near the Beckstoffer Georges III is rich, opulent, fleshy and already strutting its complexity and fruit-forward characteristics. Drink it over the next 15-20 years. (RP)  (12/2016)

92 points Vinous

 The 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon is a very pretty wine to drink now and over the next handful of years. Soft contours and bold, racy fruit add to that impression. Expressive floral notes, cedar, tobacco, smoke, red cherry and earthy tones accentuate the Rutherford character in this expressive Cabernet Sauvignon. (AG)  (12/2016)

K&L Notes

The McGah family is best known as cofounder of the Oakland Raiders in the 1960s. Their vineyards were purchased in 1990, and have since produced premium wines from Rutherford bench fruit, earning up to 100-point scores from critics. Tasting notes for the 2014 Zinfandel from the winemaker: "Our estate vines basked in the brilliant warmth of the long, dry 2014 summer, creating a sublime Zinfandel heaven. The mesmerizing deep ruby and purple color leaps from the glass as Scarlett Zinfandel emanates scents of blackberry pie, thyme and licorice. Bold, ripe, rich and smooth, the midpalate pumps out wave after wave of pure luscious fruit surrounded by round but firm tannins. This plush texture has become the signature of our Zinfandel, giving it the ability to keep its power contained. This flavorful beauty will be a fantastic accompaniment to a hearty barbeque, savory dishes or a strong blue cheese or Parmigiano-Reggiano. Drink now with a short decant or cellar it for 3-4 years to uncover more layers and complexities."

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Price: $39.99
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- The bid to name Zinfandel California's "State Varietal" may have failed, but this red wine grape, grown extensively in California since the mid-1800s, is grown in few other places in the world. Sadly, much of what's cultivated today is planted where it's too hot and flat. But when planted to well-drained, hillside vineyards that are warm but not too hot, like those in Sonoma County's Dry Creek Valley and Amador County in the Sierra Foothills, Zinfandel can produce wines with plenty of character. High in natural alcohol and tannin, grown carefully it can be rich and complex, with dark fruit berry fruit and peppery spice. The most known example of Zinfandel outside of California is Italy's Primitivo, which can be similar in style, but is often a bit lighter and less alcoholic than West Coast examples.

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.


- 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.
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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.