This is one captivating Cabernet, from that deep ruby color to the super long finish. Aromas of fig, Luxardo cherry, black currant and lavender are edged in toasty oak notes from 22 months in 55% new French oak. The palate reveals complex layers of dark fruit with tobacco and anise. The tannins are delicate but they linger on the finish with flavors of chocolate and orange rind.
Mike and Sandy Davis made a big play with their recent acquisition of some prized land near Calistoga for their up-and-coming winery. And though they may be new to the game (they spent 23 years working together in the technology sector), their instincts and vision will have them atop the mountain in short order. They’re doing things the right way. The 155-acre Calistoga property has been home to wine-growing families since 1873. With an elevation ranging from 50 to 1,400 feet, to say they’re working with a diverse array of soil types and microclimates would be far underselling their options in the vineyard. We got in on this game early. You’d be wise to do the same.
The 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley) is a real powerhouse. Inky dark fruit, crème de cassis, chocolate, licorice, sweet spice and vanillin are kicked up a few notches. This is a decidedly unctuous, flamboyant style, but it works well. The 2018 is not exactly subtle, but it will offer plenty of immediacy, especially if the tannins soften a bit.