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1995 Moraga Vineyards "Bel Air" Los Angeles County Bordeaux Blend

SKU #1041589 Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 1995 Cabernet Sauvignon (450 cases produced) is a Bordeaux look-alike, at least aromatically. It exhibits a tobacco leaf, smoky, cedar, and black currant-scented nose, followed by crisp, tart acidity, some austerity, but flavorful, youthful, rich red and black currant fruit. Medium-bodied and spicy, with moderately aggressive tannin in the finish, it needs 4-5 years of cellaring, and should age for 2 decades. Recent vintages have been aged in 100% new French oak casks. (RP)  (12/1997)

Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Dark red color, with a hint of development at the rim. Cooler aromas of currant, mocha and humus; note of nutty herbaceousness (acorn?). Drier and leaner than the above; not quite as ripe as the '96 but boasts a penetrating flavor. Finishes with a note of tobacco and firm but not excessive acidity. The '94 Moraga, retasted twice in recent months, remains the best release to date, combining Graves and Pauillac characteristics (camphor, tobacco, sappy black cherry, mulberry and woodsmoke) and showing a velvety texture and mellow tannins more akin to claret than California cabernet. (ST)  (5/1998)

K&L Notes

According to Robert Parker: "This is one of the more interesting vineyards in California. Nearly a decade ago I walked the vineyard with the proprietor and was surprised by how good the wine was then. Yet I never thought this estate would get to the point where it would be a commercially viable operation. The vineyard sits on some of the most valuable real estate in California - in Bel Air, the wealthy Los Angeles suburb." (12/1995)

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Price: $79.99
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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 M├ędoc 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.