1995 Pride Mountain "Reserve" Napa Valley Claret

SKU #902130 96 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The fabulous 1995 Claret Reserve (a blend of 64% Cabernet Sauvignon, 33% Merlot, and 3% Petit Verdot) offers an opaque ruby/purple color, and a classic creme de cassis nose intermixed with toasty new oak and minerals. Full-bodied, with superb texture, dense, massively rich flavors, and a 40+ second finish, this is a gorgeously made, Bordeaux-styled wine with dazzling levels of fruit and extract. (RP)  (8/1998)

93 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Black-ruby color. Vibrant, expressive aromas of cassis, minerals and spice. Lush and sweet but sappy and bright; inky but pliant in the mouth. A wine with uncanny concentration and a firm mineral underpinning. Toothfurring tannins coat the entire mouth. Explosive finishing fruit. (ST)  (6/1998)

92 points Wine Spectator

 Dark red garnet in color, intense and concentrated, with a rich core of earthy red currant, black cherry, fresh earth and cedary oak and mocha notes. The finish shows a chewy wall of tannins that may be with this wine forever. Still, it's impressive for its concentration and depth of flavor. Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot. (Web Only—2005)

K&L Notes

The cult following for Pride Mountain has been in full force for years now. Situated high up at the top of Spring Mountain, the winery straddles the Sonoma/Napa county line and commands a spectacular view of Mount St. Helena. The property was a winery well over 100 years ago, and now produces some of the more sought-after wines in California. The reviewers tend to agree with the collectors, as the wines regularly achieve fantastic scores in numerous respected publications.

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Price: $169.99
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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.
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.
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.