2016 Mark Ryan Winery "Dead Horse" Red Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon

SKU #1411857 94 points Decanter

 Rich, dense and chunky, with notes of cassis, cigar box and savoury spice. Great to drink now or to age. 91% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc.  (5/2019)

94 points Jeb Dunnuck

 The inky colored 2016 Dead Horse (91% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc, and 2% Petit Verdot) comes all from Red Mountain and it has the more savory, mineral-style of that terroir front and center. Cassis, toasted spice, dried earth, and lead pencil notes all flow to a full-bodied, concentrated, yet elegant Cabernet Sauvignon that does everything right. Even with the Red Mountain structure, it has plenty of upfront charm, which is common from this great vintage. Ideally, it will be given 2-3 years of bottle age and will keep for two decades.  (4/2019)

93 points James Suckling

 Dark stony aromas with redcurrants and cherries that lead to a very fluid, polished and even-paced palate. Long, enduring dark-fruit flavors here; this has handsomely balanced style. 91% cabernet sauvignon, 4% merlot, 3% cabernet franc and 2% petit verdot. Drink or hold.  (7/2019)

K&L Notes

Winemaker's Notes: "Washington’s best Cabernet Sauvignon sites provided fruit for the 2016 Dead Horse. The mature sites of Ciel du Cheval, Klipsun and Red Willow provide texture, nuance and character. Younger sites like our custom plantings at Quintessence add purity, vitality and structure to our flagship program. The warm 2016 vintage was similar to the 2015 vintage in that it allowed us to harvest all of our Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot in the month of September. The wine was fermented in a combination of 1.5, 2 and 5 ton open top fermenters for 7-10 days. Every effort is made to treat the wine as gently as possible. The must is never put through pumps and gentle punch downs occur twice per day. The wine is lightly pressed to barrel, where it finishes primary and malolactic fermentation and is aged for 21 months in 74% new French oak. The wine was racked twice prior to being bottled on June 24th, 2018. The 2016 Dead Horse is a classic representation of Red Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon. A subtle crossing of bramble and eucalyptus accompany the initial impression. The mid-palate morphs from a rich mouthfeel of compote and vanilla to a showing of graphite and slate that are carried through to the clinging finish by life giving acidity. One to enjoy now and revisit over many years!"

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Price: $59.95

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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.