By: Bryan Brick | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 1/16/2013 | Send Email
One of my favorite trends in the wine industry right now is the number of historic wineries that are returning to the quality and focus that their reputation was built on. Over the years, especially in the ‘90s, many of the larger, big name wineries thought it would be a good idea to make as much wine as they could. Wineries were purchasing fruit from every nook and cranny of California and hitting massive numbers in case production. If you asked them the quality of their wine was the same, if not better, but how could that be the case when wineries were jumping production by thousands of cases? Many of the wineries realized, for one reason or another, that that line of thinking may not be the best approach for the image, or quality, of their brand. In recent years I have felt like numerous historic wineries have vastly improved their wines and a perfect example of this is the 2009 Clos Du Val Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. If you’ve ever had the CDV Cabs from the ‘70s and ‘80s you know what sort of amazing wine they can produce and while I don’t think this wine will last 20-30 years it is certainly a tremendous effort for a relatively affordable wine. For under $30 here you get a classically styled Napa Valley Cabernet with a pretty nose full of green olive, sandalwood, tanbark, cassis and cocoa powder. This is not a bombastic wine full of glycerin and sweet, confectionary oak but a wine of precision and place. With its medium weighted frame and seamless flavors of red currant, Kalamata olives, cedar and fresh sage this harkens back to when Cabs were made more for dinner than impressing your boss. Kudos to the folks at Clos Du Val for going back to what made their winery so damn fantastic in the first place!