2009 Cabernet Sauvignon Velour on the Stag's Leap Line
A Cab Lover's Dream
Ok, let's just say that if red wine was all that was left after the Apocalypse, I would have no problem surviving. If all that was left was this Carl Roy cab I would consider myself the luckiest man left on the planet. I have tasted so many cabs in my day, but never one I would rate as highly as this. From start to finish, this is by far the best I have ever had. I wish Wineaccess had 6 stars on its histogram for this one. There better be more of this available soon, or I am gonna be one cranky wino.
-- Mark from Naples, FL
This is our house Cab
We buy this one every year and serve it whenever we have guests. Blows them away every time. Then we tell them the price.
-- Jason from Pawtucket, RI
An absolute favorite. I bought it twice.
-- Phil from Brooklyn, NY
Taste Again Next Year
Powerful aroma and body. Fruity, still too young and tannic but its power and balance promise 5-stars in its future. Long aftertaste
-- John from Claremont, CA
The superb 2009 Cabernet Sauvignons have all but vanished from the top cellars on the Silverado Trail. But, as Parker and Wine Spectator would so aptly report, '09 was really a tale of two vintages -- those who harvested before the rain began on October 12 and those after.
On the low-yielding, rocky soils at the southern border of the Stags Leap line, the dry, mild summer would put out a limited crop of small berry clusters. For Chad Alexander, the bunches that would make it into his stunning 2009 Carl Roy "East Side Cuvee" reached perfect maturity in the first week of October. On October 5, a week before the storms came, every bunch was picked, setting the stage for a Cabernet Sauvignon that Alexander says upstages the superb 2007.
"All of us knew what we had in hand by late September," Alexander told us. "The growing season was reminiscent of 2007. The summer was very dry, but the temperatures were mild. Unlike 2007, we had ample underground water reserves, so the vines never felt any inkling of hydric shock. By September, we could see the seeds beginning to brown and we knew the 2009 tannins would be riper than in 2007. If the weather could just hold out a few more weeks, we'd be sitting very pretty. In the end, we were able to hold out just long enough."
When the rain drenched the valley on October 12, many were caught. In what Alexander described as a "grower's vintage," those on the valley floor who pushed yields too far were caught between a rock and a hard place. Faced with harvesting under-ripe Cabernet early or waiting out the storm, most did the latter. None of those wines would feature the lavish concentration, silken texture, or the sleek structure of Alexander's 2009 Carl Roy "East Side Cuvee."
Opaque purple to the edge, with luscious aromas of blackberry and blackcurrant, laced with violets. The attack is big, rich and dense, packed with black fruit preserves, loaded with creme-de-cassis. Velour-like in texture, the supple, slightly dusty, Stags Leap tannins bracket all the 2009 opulence, arguing for a 6-10 year stay in a cool cellar.
How many under-$30 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignons have garnered 101 five-star reviews from WineAccess buyers? Just this one. (Check the histogram to the right!)