1989 Beringer "Private Reserve" Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
Complex, and at an ideal drinking stage, with pretty plum, black cherry, currant, anise and spicy notes, finishing with firm, softening tannins and a nice dose of creamy oak. (JL)
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
If you have given up on the 1989 vintage for California Cabernet, think again. Beringer's 1989 Private Reserve is one of the stars of the vintage. Unlike many of the hollow, aggressively tannic 1989s, this dark-colored wine is loaded with rich, chocolatey, blackcurrant fruit, and spicy, toasty oak. Although it reveals harder tannin than is found in the 1990 and 1991, the tannin is not out of balance. (RP)
(13.3% alcohol; 35% Chabot, 18% State Lane, 22% St. Helena, 25% Bancroft; from a cooler summer, with the harvesters dodging rain): Very good deep red. Aromas of black licorice and wild herbs. Juicy and tight, with firm, harmonious acidity giving grip to the flavors of sour cherry and cocoa powder. Boasts good texture and weight, as well as a light gamey qualty that some may find offputting. But there's a lot of wine here. (ST)
1989 was the first vintage where the Private Reserve contained a small amount (1%) of Merlot from the Bancroft vineyard.