Whoa boy. Plumpjack is back with an ABSOLUTELY KILLER release in the 2016 vintage. This is undeniably indispensable Cabernet Sauvignon for true believers. Is this the most red-fruit-driven, most intoxicatingly scented Cabernet in Oakville? If you could bottle a perfume of crushed amarena cherries and exotic spices, it would smell like this. Seamless, utterly indulgent and mouthcoating, this will age like a dream if you can resist drinking your case. Hallelujah.
If we were to pick just one Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon to blast into interstellar space for aliens to try when they stumble upon it someday, that wine would be Plumpjack Estate Cabernet Sauvignon from Oakville. In our view it is the most flavor-packed, complex, complete bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon that you can buy, in pretty much every vintage. Plumpjack is in one posh neighborhood, with Screaming Eagle, Rudd, Bond St. Eden, and Dalla Valle all nearby. This is Oakville’s (and the Valley’s) absolute sweet spot, near the crossroads of Oakville Cross and Silverado Trail. Their Cabernets are absolutely spectacular, stuffed to the gills with ripe cherry fruit and red rose perfume—and very fairly priced compared to the neighbors.
A blend of 90% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Petit Verdot and 5% Malbec, the deep purple-black colored 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate reveals lovely, open-knit, youthful cassis, crushed black plums and black cherries scents with hints of rose hip tea, chocolate box, lavender, tobacco leaf and redcurrant jelly. The full-bodied, vibrantly fruited palate beautifully offsets the rich black fruits with red fruit and herbal sparks plus tons of freshness, finishing with a wonderfully plush texture blanketing the fruit right through the long finish.
The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate beautifully expresses so much of what makes the vintage so special. Firm yet beautifully integrated tannins give the wine its spine and overall shape. Dark cherry, mocha, licorice, spice and menthol build in a deep, powerful wine endowed with quite a bit of structure. In 2016, the Estate is vibrant, powerful and loaded with personality.
I loved the bouquet of the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate, which has awesome purity in its classic Cabernet notes of crème de cassis, lead pencil shavings, tobacco, and earthy, gravelly mineral-like aromas and flavors. Beautifully balanced, utterly seamless, and lengthy, it's a rock star of a base cuvée that readers should snatch up. It's going to drink beautifully for two decades or more. This cuvée is 90% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Petit Verdot, and 5% Malbec.