This past Wednesday I attended an excellent tasting of wines from Napa Valley California with the Oakville designation. Oakville is a sub AVA of Napa Valley and has some prime real estate to grow good juice. Almost all of the wines at the event were red and most of those were Cabernet Sauvignon or Cabernet Sauvignon based blends. The event was held at Carnegie Hall and there was a tasting for the trade in the afternoon and a consumer tasting later that evening.
I enjoy these theme tasting, all of the wines poured carried the “Oakville” AVA and it’s fun to try wines from various producers from a specific area. In general the reds were all big wines, dark and concentrated but not all were fruit bombs. Many showed some tight restraint with all that concentration. They were all good wines but I enjoyed some more than others, my favorites included:
Ramey Wine Cellars which poured their 2008 and the 2009 “Pedregal Vineyard” Cabernet Sauvignon. Both nice wines with differend styles, the ’08 was tighter than the ’09 which was more fruit forward. Far Niente poured their 2005 and 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon. Robert Mondavi poured some nice juice, their 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon “Reserve” and the 2009 Opus One were both excellent. Groth Vineyards poured their 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon as well as their Reserve 2008 & 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon. Nickel & Nickel produces several single vineyard designation Cabernet Sauvignon, today I enjoyed the 2009 “Rock Cairn”. Turnbull poured a nice 2009 “Black Label” Cabernet Sauvignon. Spoto Vineyards poured their 2010 “Cuvee Lenore” Cabernet Sauvignon from a magnum and Franciscan Vineyards poured their 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon. Oakville Ranch Vineyards poured one of their library wines, a 1997 Cabernet Sauvignon which was drinking beautifully at this point
Most wineries poured Cabernet Sauvignon but there were a few other varietals as well. Detert Vineyards poured a nice 2009 Cabernet Franc and Paradigm poured a 2009 Cabernet Franc as well. Swanson Vineyards poured a 2008 Merlot while Gargiulo Vineyards poured their 2009 “Aprile” which is mostly Sangiovese. This wine was definitely the lightest colored wine in the room, with a hint of the tar and violets that you would get from an Italian Sangiovese but with Cali fruit. It was a very nice wine in a roomful of outstanding California juice.