2010 Dehlinger Russian River Valley Claret

SKU #1296410 92 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Made from 70% cabernet sauvignon and 30% syrah and aged in 40% new French oak. Opaque ruby. Black and blue fruits on the nose, with a bright, spicy quality adding verve. Sappy, penetrating and gently sweet, offering energetic cassis and boysenberry flavors and a touch of anise. Finishes on a suave, sweet note, with great length, energy and lift (ST)  (5/2013)

91 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2010 Claret is quite different from previous vintages in that it includes 30% Syrah Goldridge, which gives the wine a sense of structure and tannin that is a bit unusual for this bottling. Racy and dark in its introspection, the 2010 is likely to require a few a good years in bottle before it starts showing well. Olives, black cherries, sage, rosemary and licorice are all woven into the finish. (AG)  (4/2013)

90 points Wine Spectator

 Understated and Bordeaux-like in its restraint and flavor profile, offering spice, red bell pepper, red berry and currant flavors. Gracefully balanced, pure and persistent. Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah. Drink now through 2022. 380 cases made. (JL)  (1/2013)

Connoisseurs Guide

 (One Star) With a nicely composed nose of black cherries, plums, creamy oak and a bare wisp of tobacco leaf, Dehlinger's Cabernet/Syrah blend follows with full-sized flavors of dark fruits, briar and olives and steers to richness rather than finesse. It is fleshy and full-bodied with a slight twist of last-minute heat, and we like its chances to grow into better some five years down the line.  (4/2013)

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Price: $44.99
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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:

Alexander Valley/Russian River

- Among Sonoma County's northernmost appellations, the Alexander Valley AVA acts as a gateway to neighboring Napa to the east and Mendocino to the north. It is a sprawling appellation, with pockets of distinct microclimates and soils, and as such, is home to a variety of wine grapes and styles. Nearly everything grows in the Alexander Valley, though Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay are the most widely planted grapes. The Russian River Valley lies to the south of Alexander Valley, and is marked by much cooler temperatures and frequently heavy fog. The Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grown here are some of the state's finest and most sought-after. Aromatic whites like Gewürztraminer and Riesling can also be successful, and sparkling wine production has a long history in the area.