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1995 Chateau Montelena "Estate" Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon (1.5L)

SKU #994443 94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 This is another winery where the 1995 may be as strong as the 1994. The color is an opaque purple. The wine is full-bodied and powerful, with classic notes of cassis intermixed with loamy soil scents, underbrush, and spice. There is massive body and elevated, but sweet tannin that is well-integrated with the wine's other components, a blockbuster mid-palate, and a finish that lasts for 30+ seconds. Anticipated maturity: 2000-2025. Modern-day society seems to always be in search of new stars, but this winery has been a super hero for great California Cabernet Sauvignon for nearly 25 years! Montelena's Estate Cabernet Sauvignons are equivalent to buying blue chip stock. They get better and better with age and as the vertical tastings I have attended so persuasively attest, they are still relatively young wines at 20 years of age! (RP)  (12/1998)

92 points Vinous

 Bright, full medium ruby. Cool, medicinal aromas of black cherry, menthol, graphite, licorice and cinders are quite fresh, even high-pitched. Suave and alive, conveying a slight medicinal coolness to the flavors of dark berries, bitter cherry, leather, minerals and spices. This fine-grained, rather stylish Cabernet is juicy and light on its feet, with enough mid-palate material to cushion its firm tannins. Lovely old-style Cabernet--and not a bruiser. (ST)  (6/2016)

92 points Wine Spectator

 Not as dense and concentrated as the 1994, but still a tremendous wine. Elegant and rich, with currant, cherry, cookie dough and vanilla-scented oak.--Chateau Montelena vertical. (JL)  (11/1999)

91 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Good red-ruby color. Brighter aromas of black cherry, pepper, chocolate and fresh herbs. Sweet and lush, if not quite as fat as the '96. A note of humus adds complexity. Finishes with fresh cassis and cherry flavors, moderate tannins and excellent length. (ST) 91+  (5/1998)


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Price: $269.99

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Varietal:

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.
Country:

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.
Sub-Region:

California

- 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.