2010 Anderson's Conn Valley Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate Reserve Napa Valley

2010 Anderson's Conn Valley Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate Reserve Napa Valley

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A past Wine Access story about 2010 Anderson's Conn Valley Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate Reserve Napa Valley

An astounding 4.34 out of five — with 111 perfect 5-star reviews!

A Library Release for the Ages

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Our first offer of the 2010 Anderson’s Conn Valley Cabernet Sauvignon Estate Reserve would make for one of the fastest sellouts in WineAccess history. 100 cases disappeared in just a few hours on a cold Monday morning. Much of the West Coast was shut out. A few months later, Todd Anderson agreed to a second allocation, and it was much the same. Since then, 230 buyers have weighed in. The average rating? A whopping 4.34 out of five — with 111 perfect 5-star reviews!

Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate called Napa’s 2010 Cabernet “epic,” describing the top wines as “utterly brilliant, with deep colors, precise fruit, ripe tannins and expressive aromatics.” Todd Anderson, who has been crafting brilliant, age-worthy, estate-grown Reserves at his Conn Valley stronghold for three decades, called his massive 2010 “the purest, most elegant Cabernet Sauvignon in Conn Valley’s history.”

Parker’s one-time protégé, Antonio Galloni, wholeheartedly agreed. “The 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate Reserve is fabulous,” he wrote. “It is also the best of the 2010s at the estate.” In earlier reviews, Galloni described “layers of blue and black fruit, smoke, tobacco and licorice, all woven together beautifully,” and the “creamy, layered finish laced with expressive blue and black fruits.”

Tasting the wine a year later, it was still “firing on all cylinders,” concluding “a huge, explosive finish rounds things out in style,” and slapped on the 95-point score that had every distributor in the country banging down Todd Anderson’s door.

Of course, any smart Napa Valley producer will tell you that when an epic vintage aligns on a hefty score, it’s best to sock away CASES and to fill out the Library. Why? Markups on Library wines are typically 25% above the release price. That extra 25% can make up the difference in years when Mother Nature unleashes her wrath — years like 1998, 2000, and 2011 in Napa Valley when success depended upon where your vineyards were planted, and when you picked.  

The 2010 Anderson’s Conn Valley Cabernet Sauvignon Estate made for a terrifically concentrated “Reserve” that’s still drinking beautifully today — Galloni suggests it won’t hit its peak until sometime in 2032. When Todd called us last week, offering one more shot at his gorgeously chiseled 2010, we pounced. Moved by our loyalty and wanting to reward WineAccess members who’ve snatched up every Anderson’s Conn Valley Cabernet we’ve offered, Todd offered us another 50 cases of his 2010 Estate Reserve.

If you missed out four years ago, today is redemption day. Drop by the winery and pay $95 per bottle. Or, click the “Buy” button now, and sit back as you re-read the confirmation email in your inbox that says you only paid a jaw-dropping $60 per bottle for one of the greatest Library Releases in WineAccess history. Shipping included on 4. You make the call.

Expert Ratings and Reviews

95 Points Vinous Media
93 Points Vinous Media

Customer Ratings

Based on 306 ratings

Conn Valley Cabs are some of my all time favorites. Lots of fruit ,complexity and a smooth velvety finish. You would be hard pressed to find a better value than this one. This is a world class wine from a world class producer.

All who shared this wine loved it!

Anderson Conn Valley is always consistent and have been to the winery and truly fantastic wines and winemaking. Great deal on this wine

Anderson's Conn Valley

Beautiful! But five years can't pass fast enough to get to this one again ... it will be spectacular! A little tight right now, but you can tell it will be a monster~

2010 Anderson's Conn Valley Cabernet

Wine is not yet mature.

41/2 2tars

Anderson's Conn Valley wines are always excellent - full flavor profile, smooth finish with 6+ years of bottle age or more, and very reasonably priced.

Nice but not the 2008

Gave it a ton of air, probably more than it needed (24 hrs). Comparing against the 2008, which is outstanding, this leaves quite a bit to be desired, as it is a bit thin and acidic in the mid-to-finish, particularly lacking on a deep finish. Great nose and the velvety mouthfeel that seems to be the Anderson Cab gimmick, so there's definitely some hope that there could be some integration forthcoming, but for now, it is just a normal QPR vs its normal position as Napa cab QPR leader.

Not great for the price point. Only drank 3 bottles so far but none of them were what I was expecting. The 2013 bottles I had were much much better.

Another winner. Full bodied and the flavor lasts and lasts.

Napa Valley 2010

The 2010 vintage in Napa was cool, late, and long, yielding elegant, focused, almost Bordeaux-styled wines — a definite departure from recent great vintages in which heat, drought, sun, and fruit driven power are the hallmarks. These are solid, structured wines that will need a few years to shed their youthful grip and tension. It will be interesting to watch how the 2010s age, but if you’re fond of restrained, classically-styled Napa Valley Cabernet, this is your vintage.

The season started late, with ample rainfall. After several years of very dry conditions, rain was welcome, though it pushed back the ripening cycle (bud break, flowering, and fruit set) by about two weeks. Frost was never a problem. The summer that followed was cool, and growers worked to adjust canopies and crop loads to accommodate the slow pace of ripening. Veraison occurred about two weeks late, and by the middle of August many were predicting that harvest would be almost three weeks later than average.

With vineyards pruned and canopies thinned for the cool conditions (temperatures regularly topped out around 70℉ during mid-summer), a couple of heat spikes in late August and early September (some to well over 100℉) presented challenges for growers. Many vineyards that were set up for optimal sun exposure in the cool conditions were damaged by sunburn. This required hard work to isolate and drop the damaged bunches. A reduction in yields was part of the collateral damage. After the spikes, cool temperatures returned, and September stayed cool except for a brief warm spell at month’s end.

The harvest was late but the grapes needed the extra hang time to develop. The brief warm spell at the end of September, and another in the middle of October, helped the plants eke out a little more ripeness. With rain predicted in the third week of October, it was time to pick, ready or not.

Overall, it was a tricky and challenging year. Managing the cool summer and then dealing with the heat were major obstacles. The best, but most labor intensive and painful strategy, seems to have been to thin bunches and set up for maximum ripening, meticulously select out the berries damaged by heat, and then pick as late as possible before the rain. The growers that did this ended up with a small but concentrated and classically balanced crop. It was certainly labor intensive, and costly, in terms of the reduced yields, but who said grape growing was easy?

The best wines from this vintage are solid and deeply colored, with beautiful aromatics, concentration, purity, and detail. Generally speaking, alcohols are lower than the norm, and the wines express lively, deep, dark fruit notes, elements that only come from long, cool growing seasons. They have the acidity, tannin, and structure to match the fruit, and should be long-lived, classy wines. Where growers got it wrong, you can find green notes and a weird combination of cool-climate unripe, herbal tones, oddly mixed with overripe, candied or bitter, burnt characteristics (from bunches affected by the heat that weren’t sorted out). From the weather to the wines, we’re talking about a vintage of peaks and valleys, but when winemakers and growers really got it right, quality is outstanding.

Key Dates

August
First heat spike causes sunburn and shrivels berries; Temperatures over 100℉ recorded in some spots

October
First rainfall arrives and signals the end of optimal harvest window

October
Three days of temperatures over 100℉ impact the grapes

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