2005 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
California: Napa Valley
What We Say
SUPERIOR WINE ALERT:
Today’s Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon from Adobe Road is a remarkably delicious wine that showcases the best of Napa and Adobe’s own winemaking prowess
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Mission Codename: All roads lead to Adobe
Operative: Agent Red
Objective: Return to Operative’s favorite, Adobe Road Winery, and return with their stupendous Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
Mission Status: Accomplished!
Current Winery: Adobe Road Winery
Wine Subject: 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley
Winemaker: Michael Scorsone
Backgrounder: Napa Cabernet Sauvignon continues to dominate as the leader in California red wine. For good reason, too, as Napa produces some of the richest and most delicious examples on the planet. Today’s wine is a beautifully balanced delight that had us wishing for another bottle, mere moments after we polished off the first. Read Agent Red’s tasting notes and mission report for the full briefing
Wine Spies Tasting Profile:
Look – Deep and dark ruby in color with edges that go slightly lighter. The wine appears soft and springy with swirled. When the wine finally settles down, slender medium-width legs march steadily down the glass
Smell – Deeply aromatic, this wine delivers an initial rush dark mixed berries with pronounced blackberry. These are followed by cassis, cranberry, bramble, vanilla, and soft mixed spice. At the very front of the nose, a very unique aroma of subtle Butter Rum Lifesaver candy appears
Feel – Soft and velvet smooth on initial entry. Then, almost immediately, ripe medium tannins take hold, drying the tongue and cheeks while puckering the lips
Taste – Delicious and dark, leading with blackberry, blueberry and ripe raspberry. Then, flavors of dark plum, spice, oak and subtle fresh green tobacco leaf
Finish – Ultra-long and very flavorful, with dark berry and soft spice that linger long after you sip
Conclusion – This is a fantastic, classic Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. All of our previous Adobe Road offerings have been from their Sonoma County vineyards, so I was excited to have a chance to this exceptional Napa Valley Cab. Deep, delicious and bold, this wine is classic Napa. The wine is balanced and, where some Napa Cabs like to push your palate around, this wine maintains its composure, delivering a more refined drinking experience. Enjoy with a variety of foods as balanced acidity allows the wine to play well with others. Drink now – and cellar a few bottles for the next several years.
Note: After a half-full bottle sat overnight (cork in, not gassed), we revisited a sampling. The wine showed off even deeper aromatics. We found candied cherry on the nose, and even deeper dark berries and vanilla! I recommend decanting this wine for at least an hour for best results.
Today we are very pleased to bring you an interview with the very busy winemaker for Adobe Road Winery, Michael Scorsone:
AGENT RED: Greetings, Michael. We are thrilled to be showing your 2005 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon today. The wine is fantastic. Can you please tell us a little bit about the wine?
MICHAEL SCORSONE: Hi Agent Red!!! Thanks. We all love this wine.
RED: Was there a specific experience in your life that inspired your love of wine?
MICHAEL: Growing-up in an Italian Family, attending the C.I.A, Being a professional chef.
RED: C.I.A.?! By that, you mean the Culinary Institute of America and not that other spy agency. Tell me this, where did you learn the most about winemaking?
MICHAEL: I learned a lot through previous jobs and schooling, Traveling and working in Italy, France, New Zealand. However, anyone can learn to make wine. It’s personality and philosophy that sets us apart.
RED: What is your winemaking style or philosophy?
MICHAEL: Let the wines show character and personality. A strong sense of vineyard location. Show tradition…but not afraid to take chances. Don’t make the wine into something it’s not.
RED: Porsche racing legend, Kevin Buckler, owns the winery. How much input does he have during the winemaking process?
MICHAEL: Kevin has a great pallet! He is always tasting with us and giving input. He definitely brings something to the table.
RED: How long have you been making wine?
MICHAEL: ’09 will be my 8th vintage.
RED: Excellent. And who do you make wine for?
RED: What is one piece of advice that you would give to someone that is considering a career as a winemaker?
MICHAEL: It is a lifestyle…not just a job! You have to love it and be passionate about farming and winemaking. Yes.. it is romantic, but it is very hard work.
RED: What is occupying your time at the winery these days?
MICHAEL: HARVEST! Just in time, too. The rains are coming and we’ve been working hard to get all of the fruit off in time – but not before it’s ready. It’s a careful balancing act to be sure.
RED: Please share one thing about yourself that few people know
MICHAEL: If I tell you….then everyone will know.
RED: Fair enough. What is your favorite ‘everyday’ or table wine?
MICHAEL: I love “Burgundy” I also love to find cheap random “old-world” wines that are usually overlooked.
RED: How would you recommend that people approach your wines, or wine in general?
MICHAEL: With a corkscrew, a glass, and a willing attitude!
RED: Nice! If you could choose any one wine to drink (regardless of price or availability), what would it be?
MICHAEL: Wow !!!! I could go crazy trying to narrow that down to one wine. Probably some older Domain Dujac from Burgundy
RED: What is the one question that I should have asked you, and what is your answer to that question?
MICHAEL: Shaken…….not stirred and long walks on a beach
RED: Interesting… Well, Michael, thank very much for spending this time with me. Keep up the great work, we continue to be big fans!
MICHAEL: Thanks, Red!
What the Winery Says
About This Wine:
Enticing nose of vanilla, dark berries, cranberry and cassis, this is a big, concentrated wine with good structure and loads of fruit on the palate – a handcrafted, small production Cabernet Sauvignon at half the price of its competitors!
Winemaking: Hand harvested whole clusters that were cold soaked and fermented in small, open-top bins that were punched down twice daily through fermentation and gently basket pressed.
About The Winery:
Adobe Road is a small, family-owned winery located in Petaluma. We specialize in flavorful, distinctive wines. Each of our vintages is handcrafted with fine attention to detail, for a unique taste and experience. Our wines are created in small lots, allowing precise quality control to ensure that every bottle is just the way our wine artisans intended. Traditionally, Adobe Road has produced rich red wines such as Cabernet Sauvignon and Zinfandel, but 2006 brings a lighter Sauvignon Blanc to our tasting room.
Adobe Road Winery is owned by renowned sports car racer and entrepreneur Kevin Buckler and his wife, Debra. Adobe Road Winery produces award winning Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, Zinfandel, Cabernet Franc, Syrah and Petite Sirah exclusively from Sonoma County sources. The tasting room is located in Petaluma, California. In 1995 Kevin founded The Racer’s Group (TRG) and grew it into an internationally prominent manufacturer and distributor of performance Porsche parts, while simultaneously building a career as a successful endurance sportscar racer and team owner. Kevin’s accomplishments as a driver include class wins at the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona (2002) and the prestigious 24 Hours of Le Mans (2002), an overall win at the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona (2003), and the title of Porsche World Cup Champion in 2002. As a team owner, Kevin has directed the growth of The Racer’s Group into an internationally-acclaimed racing team.
With friends, the Bucklers started making “garage wine”, which, after prodding from enthusiastic friends started commercially bottling under the Adobe Road label in 1999. Through Kevin’s good connections, he has acquired grapes from some very prestigious vineyards, which he handcrafts into extremely limited-production wines. The awards have followed, with the Adobe Road 2001 Zinfandel winning a Silver medal in the prestigious Orange County Fair Wine Competition. In March of 2005, Adobe Road brought home the gold, with the 2002 Pinot Noir winning a Gold Medal – Best of Class; the 2000 Cabernet Sauvignon placing Silver and the 2002 Zinfandel receiving Bronze at the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition. With the goal of producing exceptional wines by hand-crafting small lots of red varietals exclusively from Sonoma County, the Bucklers have dedicated themselves to seeing their vision through to reality, and the results are paying off.
Appellation: Napa Valley, Coombsville blend
Barrel Aging: 19 months in French Oak
Release: January 2008
Bottled: June 2007
Production: 685 cases