2012 Spottswoode "Family Estate" Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon (3L)
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
With the lowest percentage of Cabernet Sauvignon in of any of the wines from this vertical, the 2012 final blend was 85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Cabernet Franc and 5% Petit Verdot. Production across the board in 2012 was high, and reflected in the 3,977 cases made at Spottswoode. This is a dramatic, flamboyant, modern-day version of the 2002. Dramatic blueberry, black raspberry and blackcurrant fruit, along with camphor, charcoal, white flowers and foresty notes all emerge from the impressive aromatics that soar from the glass. The intense, explosively rich, full-bodied palate is layered with beautiful purity, stunningly sweet, silky tannins and terrific presence and complexity. This is a gorgeous wine on a relatively fast evolutionary track, I suspect, but certainly it has 30 years of upside left. (RP)
Incredible blueberry, blackberry, black walnut, mineral, black licorice and flowers. Full-bodied, very tight and structured with hints of hazelnut, fine chocolate, mineral and spice. Layered and very fine. A solid and classic-styled Napa Valley cab.
*Cellar Selection* The Novak family continue to produce an understated style of gorgeous Cabernet year in and year out. This vintage provides a fine example, a blend of 85% Cabernet Sauvignon with 10% Cabernet Franc and 5% Petit Verdot, all from the historic, 40-acre estate. Complex and smooth, it offers an exotic array of cigar, tar, black pepper and currant, the tannins soft and integrated, yet strong. Coffee and chocolate make appearances on the finish, ever so slightly, never at risk of dimming its freshness. (VB)
Dark ruby-red. Superripe aromas of cassis, blackberry, licorice, violet and rose petal. Wonderfully fleshy, fat, rich and sweet but with good energy to its flavors of dark berries, mocha and flowers. Finishes with noble, building, palate-coating tannins fully supported by the wine's dense, deep fruit and early baby fat. There plenty of structure here to support a slow and graceful evolution in bottle. (ST)
Wine & Spirits
The Novak family has farmed their 40-acre vineyard under organics since 1985 (certified in 1992). Aron Weinkauf, who joined the team as assistant winemaker in 2006, took on vineyard management three years later and has since implemented biodynamic practices. He blends this Cabernet Sauvignon with 10 percent Franc and five percent Petit Verdot, producing a smooth, bright, sunny up-valley red that holds some of the coolness of the clay soils in which it grows. Earthy and youthfully green, this should age well.
Bright crimson. Very fragrant turbo-charged Margaux style. Very determinedly claret-like! Extremely distinctive and appetising. 17.5/20 points (JR)