2014 Lail "J. Daniel Cuvée" Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon (Previously $250)

SKU #1293506 97 points Connoisseurs Guide

 Cabernet collectors take note! Here is an incredibly deep and exceptionally structured rendition that more than deserves the much-overused term “classic,” and its marvelous combination of stamina, strength, layering and precise, terrifically sustained varietal fruit is one that is rarely equaled let alone surpassed. As great wines will inevitably do, it reveals a bit more of itself with each sniff and sip, and, even though it shows an unexpected sense of polish and manages to avoid the pronounced tannic harshness of youth, this is one that is some time away from living up to its certain promise. It is not inexpensive, but it makes good on the boast that its price tag poses.  (4/2017)

95 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The flagship wines include the 2014 J. Daniel Cuvée Cabernet Sauvignon, which comes from three sources – the family vineyard called Molehill at a 1700-feet elevation on Howell Mountain, the Vine Hill Ranch Vineyard and Heimark Vineyard in Calistoga. A gorgeous 2014, with notes of graphite, mulberry and blackcurrant, this full-bodied, opaque purple wine offers terrific fruit purity, sweet tannin, and a long finish of a good 45+ seconds. It was aged 19 months in 75% new French oak and is 100% Cabernet Sauvignon. There are 1,064 cases, and it can be drunk now or cellared for another 25 years. (RP)  (10/2016)

95 points Vinous

 The 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon John Daniel Cuvée turned out beautifully. In fact, it is even better from bottle than it was from barrel. Deep, unctuous and powerful, but with good freshness, the 2014 hits all the right notes. Specifically, the 2014 offers tons of richness, but without the heaviness or raisinated character that has defined some previous years. This is a striking set of wines from Robin Lail and her longtime winemaker Philippe Melka. The 2014 Cabernets are among the highlights. Those wines capture all the intensity that is typical here, but with less of the overripe quality of some past years. (AG)  (10/2016)

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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.