2006 Pride Mountain "Vintner Select Cuvée" Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

SKU #1054116 96 points Wine Enthusiast

 What a fine, beautiful wine this is. Shows every graceful aspect of a modern Napa Cab, from the perfectly ripened fruit to the unbelievably fine tannins and application of oak. Thrills the mouth with decadently rich black currants, crême de cassis, milk chocolate, anise and cedar flavors, but never loses an impeccable sense of balance and control. *Best of 2009*  (6/2009)

95 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 A fabulous effort, the opaque purple-hued 2006 Cabernet Sauvignon Vintner's Select (last year's review was for the 2005, not the 2006) is super-rich in texture, fruit, and depth. A big, mountain-styled Cabernet with sweet tannin and lots of personality as well as potential, it should evolve for at least 10-15 years. (RP)  (12/2009)

93 points Wine Spectator

 Remarkably youthful, firmly built, with a tight core of cedar-framed dark berry, anise, licorice, herb and spicy floral scents. Gains depth, richness and length while unfolding, ending with dusty, gravelly, loamy earth tannins on the finish. (JL, Web Only-2016)

92 points Connoisseurs Guide

 This wine is very much geared to ripeness, but is also brimming with intense, keenly defined offering fruit and is unstinting in rich oak. True to the winery norm, it is big, deep and dramatic, and it is not one that is likely to be embraced by those looking for refinement and grace. It is at once both lush and very well-balanced and will prove a certain delight for fans of expressive, highly concentrated, California Cabernet Sauvignon, and its fine spine of structural tannins guarantees a lengthy and increasingly complex future. *Two Stars*  (4/2009)

92 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Good deep ruby. Less expressive on the nose today than the Vintner Select Merlot, hinting at currant, mocha, brown sugar and sweet oak. Then tighter and less sweet on the palate, but with noteworthy purity and definition to the flavors of dark raspberry liqueur, tobacco, minerals and black olive. This lively, firmly built Cabernet finishes floral and long, with dusty tannins that call for at least two or three years of cellaring. Winemaker Johnson notes that these vines practically touch those used for the Vintner Select Merlot, but the Cabernet gets the afternoon sun while the Merlot is favored from the mid-morning through mid-afternoon. (ST)  (6/2010)

90 points James Suckling

 Nice aromas of plum, menthol, and flowers. This is full of fruit. Medium bodied, with a lovely sweet fruit finish and fine tannins.  (2/2011)

K&L Notes

The cult following for Pride Mountain has been in full force for years. Situated high atop 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 respected publications.

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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.
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.