2013 Leonetti Walla Walla Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

SKU #1245215 96 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Leading off the 2013s, the 2013 Walla Walla Cabernet Sauvignon comes all from estate vineyard and is 75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Merlot, 9% Petit Verdot and 7% Malbec, all of which spent 22 months in new and once used French oak. It’s vibrant purple color is followed by classic notes of crème de cassis, violets, tobacco leaf, lead pencil shavings and graphite. This full-bodied, ripe, yet still elegant Cabernet (which checks in at 14.7% alcohol) has terrific purity, ripe, polished tannin and a great finish. It has the purity and finesse to drink beautifully today, but it will have 20-25 years of overall longevity. (JD)  (6/2016)

93 points Vinous

 (70% new French oak): Bright red-ruby. Very sexy aromas of blueberry, dark raspberry, pomegranate, mocha, cola and top-quality oak, lifted by violet and mint high tones. Very rich, deep, creamy wine, with its intense, vibrant red and darker berry flavors accented by spices. Slightly edgy acidity and youthfully clenched tannins call for patience; I would not be at all surprised if this seriously structured but plush and very long wine eventually merited an even higher rating. Chris Figgins described 2013 and 2014 as "pretty much identical vintages, although 2014 was a more even growing season, with fewer heat spikes." Both vintages, he said, had "good acidity considering their warmth. The 2013s are a bit angular while the "14s are more user-friendly wines." Incidentally, Figgins told me that he's not afraid to water back his musts in hot years, "but not with Seven Hills fruit, which typically matures in terms of flavor and phenolics at fairly low sugars so it's not necessary." Figgins added that Seven Hills fruit shows "a more feminine profile" that he believes would be damaged by any dilution. (ST)  (6/2016)

92 points Wine Spectator

 Broad and expressive, with a sense of elegance to the savory-accented black cherry, berry and underbrush aromas and flavors, wrapped in fine, firm tannins. Best from 2018 through 2023. 2,876 cases made.  (8/2016)

Jancis Robinson

 Sweet oak and very ripe fruit but there is an attractive herbal character giving some extra dimension. Very typical New World Cabernet Sauvignon.  (3/2015)

K&L Notes

The 2013 Leonetti Cab comes from five different vineyards in the Walla Walla Valley, and contains a soupçon of Merlot, Petit Verdot, and Malbec to round out the blend. From the winemaker: "Dark and brooding, our 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon has a beautiful nose of blackberries, blue fruits, spices, and black tea, perfectly framed by a light touch of toasted French oak. As a warm year in the Walla Walla Valley, Cabernet truly shined and yielded deliciously generous wine with a long, pure finish. Classic Leonetti Cabernet from a remarkable vintage."

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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.


- Washington has become one of the most important wine producing states in the United States, and development continues to grow rapidly. In 1969, when California was exploding as a wine producer, Washington had only two wineries, but by 2000 that number had passed 100. Most of Washington's grape crop goes to uses other than wine. Merlot and Chardonnay have been the most successful in Washington. It's interesting to note that Washington's prime wine regions are located at 46° north, along the same latitude as the legendary French wine districts of Bordeaux and Burgundy. During the summer, Washington averages more than two hours more sunlight each day compared to California.