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2000 Etude Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon (1.5L)

SKU #1005025 92 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Good saturated ruby-red. Crystallized berries, black cherry, chocolate and minerals on the nose. Sweet on entry, then surprisingly open in the middle considering the recent bottling, with notes of raspberry, currant, chocolate and mocha, all lifted by new oak. Chewy, ripe and strong; this builds and broadens from entry to back end. Tannins are strong but smooth. A superb effort for the year. According to Soter, this wine has an impressive 32 grams per liter of dry extract, which would go a long way toward explaining its density of texture. 92(+?) (ST)  (6/2003)

91 points Connoisseurs Guide

 Introduced by attractive aromas of ripe currants and very sweet, slightly creamy oak, this very well-composed Cabernet displays an especially keen sense of fruity focus as well as exceptionally fine balance. If never a wine of enormous extract, it gets its points for proportion and polish and is, at every stop, wholly varietal in flavor and feel. It is still very much a youngster, yet it promises to age famously and should find increasing refinement over the next five or six years.  (4/2004)

91 points Wine Spectator

 Elegant yet richly flavored, built around a core of tasty plum and black cherry that fills out nicely on the palate, offering depth, richness, focus and length.  (11/2003)

90 points Wine Enthusiast

 Not really at its best now, a subdued, shy wine offering little beyond serious tannins and an earthiness infused with cassis. The finish is very astringent and sticky, yet the intense, lingering taste of cherries and currants suggests cellaring through 2008, if not longer.  (6/2004)

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Price: $119.99
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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.

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.


- 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.