2016 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
California: Napa Valley: Calistoga
Who let the wolves out?
For one zillion dollars, the question is: Who let the WOLVES out?
Seriously, we blew out the 2015 in a matter of hours, and now the 2016 with the SAME KILLER DEAL?!
As we wrote before, if you wanted to bring a knockout Cabernet to impress your serious wine pals, but hate the idea of paying $100+ a bottle to do so, this is THE ONE.
It has all the hallmarks of a primetime, big ballin’, shot-callin’ Napa Cabernet - a Rockstar winemaker, primo fruit from Calistoga, exquisite packaging - while without the stomach-churning triple-digit price tag.
In fact, already a fairly good deal at $65, a Cab this boutique is downright silly with our 43% break. Now put your speed reading into use as inventory is already moving fast, like a dachshund race.
Many of you know Hundred Acre, the cult favorite, $400/bottle, almost-always-100-point Cabernet by Jayson Woodbridge. Well, “clearly winemaking talent runs in the Woodbridge family” as Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate attests, his brother Cameron also makes bad-ass wine in that full throttle, all-or-nothing style.
Cameron worked alongside Jayson and Philippe Melka, who consulted for Hundred Acre at the time, starting in 2005. He honed his skills and broke out on his own to make a comparably opulent, hedonistic, high scoring Cabernet. Maybe you snagged some of his Stormy Weather we sold out of last year. If so, you know the style he puts out.
Side by side, the 2016 is darker and even more opaque than the 2015 – yes there is such a thing! For the nose, imagine ripe, juicy, freshly picked wild berries reducing to become jams and chutneys. Take a big sip to sprinkle in some sweet spices, chocolate, single origin espresso, and wood smoke on top of those, and build it all to a crescendo of sublime balance between fruit and savory, long and complex as can be. Spring is around the corner for outdoor grilling, you will need a lot of this, like A LOT.
Jeb Dunnuck remarks that these wines “tastes like it cost 2-3 times its listed price”. The same holds true here. In the raving review below of the 2015 Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate agrees with that assessment, raving about Cameron’s unique style that sets him apart: “compelling precision and poise and with just enough unbridled decadence to make you wonder…” adding that with the 2016 Cameron puts forth a Cab “chock-full of expressive black fruit” and “seamless freshness…”
Not to sound like a broken record, but you can spend a lot more on a Napa Cabernet and still come up short of what’s offered with these. And your friends will never need to know you paid a lot less than the already reasonable $65 retail.
If you’re still reading this, you need to move fast because a sell-out is inevitable again.
93 Points – Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate
“Clearly winemaking talent runs in the Woodbridge family. Cameron Woodbridge is the brother of Hundred Acre’s infamous genius, Jayson Woodbridge. Sourcing fruit from Calistoga and Oakville AVAs in Napa Valley, like Jayson, Cameron micro-ferments in oak barrels. And yet his style is clearly his own, producing wines with compelling precision and poise and with just enough unbridled decadence to make you wonder. Produced from 100% Cabernet Sauvignon, coming from Calistoga, the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Wolf’s Head spent 30 months in French oak barrels, 30% new. Deep garnet-purple, the nose is redolent of black cherry preserves, blackberry pie and blackcurrant cordial with hints of tilled soil, cloves, tobacco leaf and fallen leaves. Full-bodied and chock-full of expressive black fruit, the palate has a solid structure of firm, grainy tannins and seamless freshness, finishing on a lingering mineral note. 229 cases were made. Drink 2020-2034.”
Side by side, the 2016 is darker and even more opaque – yes there is such a thing!
Imagine ripe, juicy, freshly picked wild berries reducing to become jams and chutneys
Sprinkle in some sweet spices, chocolate, single-origin espresso, and wood smoke
Build it all to a crescendo of sublime balance between fruit and savory, long and complex as can be
Spring is around the corner for outdoor grilling, you will need a lot of this
What the Winery Says
- Cameron Woodbridge
- 100% Cabernet Sauvignon
- Calistoga, Napa Valley
- 30 months
- 30% new French oak
- 9 barrels