1977 Mayacamas Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

SKU #900048 94 points Vinous

 The 1977 Cabernet Sauvignon emerges from the glass with dark red cherries, plums, smoke, tobacco, licorice and incense. This is another powerful, epic wine with plenty of life ahead of it. Mint, crushed flowers and licorice linger on an intense, layered finish supported by huge, massive tannin. Floral notes add an element of lift, but the 1977 remains quite dark and brooding in style. (AG)  (6/2014)

90 points John Gilman

 The 1977 Mayacamas is another fine success for this great decade, and the wine at age thirty is fully mature and ready to drink. The wine does not offer quite the same complexity and backend grip as the finest vintages from Mayacamas, but is still delivers a fine glass redolent of black cherries, chipotle peppers, tobacco leaf, a bit of tariness and a complex base of soil nuance. On the palate the wine is full-bodied, deep and quite open knit, with plenty of sweetness in the mid-palate, melting tannins and a long, suave finish. It may just be me, but I have the distinct impression that this is a slightly lower acid vintage of Mayacamas cabernet than is typical. A lovely drink, but without quite the dimension of the greatest vintages from this property (Drink between 2007-2020)  (1/2008)

K&L Notes

95 points in James Laube's California Wine book: "Dark and inky, packed with plush black cherry, currant, mineral and cedary oak flavors. A big, dramatic, complex and deeply concentrated wine that still has a long life ahead of it. May be the best of the 1977s." (1995) During a trip to Napa in fall of 2013, K&L wine buyer Michael Jordan found a moment of bliss high up on the estate property, with a glass of the 1977 Cabernet: "A wonderful highlight of our visit was when we sat on a bench at the very top of the property, admiring the view of the Napa Valley below, with San Francisco off on the distant horizon, while enjoying a library bottle of 1977 Cabernet from the estate. It was a wine of great beauty and character that was, even now, just finding its perfection--a brilliant balance of blue and black fruit, tannin and length."

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Price: $199.99
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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:

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.