2014 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
California: Napa Valley
Ludicrous deal mode engaged!
Snagging a cult Napa Cab at a price this swift is like going 0-60 in 2 seconds. An absolute thrill ride!
At $60 this was a good deal, but for $20 and change? A total, complete no-brainer! Super limited! Pick your jaw up off the ground. Remember to breathe. Steady your pulse…
Those who know Pax Mahle already left and checked out with a case. If you aren’t familiar, Pax is one of the greatest California winemakers of this century. His wines are life-affirming, palate forming treasures that must be experienced. Grab all you can first, then read on…
Let’s start with a fact, and a quote; Pax Mahle is one of the greatest California winemakers of this century, as he rightfully earned his perfect 100-point score last year. Robert Parker’s protégé Jeb Dunnuck further elaborates; “Mahle shows that he is equally adept at crafting wines across a myriad range of styles with Agharta. The Cabernets are ripe and juicy in style, the biggest wines in Pax Mahle’s group of projects.” Big indeed, while stressing zero compromises on balance and finesse.
Lovely deep ruby enveloped by crimson highlights that twirl in the light as the wine swirls. A striking perfume opens your eyes to a complex nose with red and blue bramble notes riding alongside sweet spices. Intense milk and dark chocolate layers unfold throughout the gorgeous mouthfeel wavering with ripe cherries and raspberries. Impactful yet sweet tannins elevate the body to a weightless finish of ethereal perpetuity. As best as a Cabernet could get to serve at an elaborate Thanksgiving feast, this is the one.
In an early discovery article, Wine Spectator’s James Laube raved in his Pax to the Max article: “New Sonoma vintner off to a stellar start with only a trio of vintages in bottle, Pax Mahle has come close to running the table with outstanding wines, consistently excellent, distinctive and reasonably priced, given the high level of quality. Many of these vineyards were either ignored, overcropped or used for blends with other wines rather than farmed for low yields and concentrated wines, Mahle says. Mahle, who makes his wine in Sonoma, says he is inspired by many wines and has a fondness for Pinot Noir, Burgundy and Rhône renditions, notably those of the Northern Rhône. He counts among his favorites Chave, Chapoutier and Thierry Allemand. While he likes the power in his wines, he also aims for elements of finesse and grace.”
Stephen Tanzer of Antonio Galloni’s Vinous later added; “To say that Pax Mahle and his team are wine freaks would be an understatement. Mahle’s experience with great wines would make the most jaded collector drool and his years as a sommelier in top restaurants and as a retail buyer help to bring ‘good perspective,’ as he says, to his own wines. Mahle approaches his wines with no preconceptions and attempts to stand as far out of their way as possible but is not averse to using new oak when he believes it’s appropriate. Some wines get up to 70% new wood while others get none at all. He often vinifies whole clusters ‘for the aromatic expression they bring,’ and bottles without fining or filtration.”
What critics agree is that everything Pax touches turns to GOLD. In ascending order of intensity and volume but by all means equal in excellence, his Wind Gap, Pax and Agharta labels all deliver way beyond their costs, while the biggest challenge remains sourcing them as they are all made in tiny quantities and the scarcity has them disappear upon release. We have located a secret stash of these gems and will be featuring a few more over the next few weeks, so stay tuned!
If you haven’t yet jumped on the Pax bandwagon, experiencing Agharta will be the most extraordinary introduction. You’re in for a treat.
Here’s what the wine press has to say:
93 Points – Antonio Galloni, Vinous - “Pax Mahle’s Agharta label is composed of two Cabernet Sauvignons and one Syrah. This year, the Cabernets are especially of note. One of the most talented winemakers in California, Mahle is able to coax quite a bit of character out of his Cabernets. Deceptive in its mid-weight structure, Agharta’s 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon packs a real punch. In 2014, Pax Mahle opted to blend fruit from the two sites he works with rather than bottle vineyard designates. That was an inspired choice, as the blend of the vineyards works beautifully. Expressive floral and savory notes add dimension to a core of pungent red-toned fruit. Pliant and yet powerful, the 2014 is a complete, alluring wine with plenty to offer. Hat’s off to Pax Mahle for these unique and awesome bottles of wine! Drink 2018-2029.”
Lovely deep ruby enveloped by crimson highlights that twirl in the light as the wine swirls.
Striking perfume, complex with red and blue bramble notes riding alongside sweet spices.
Intense milk and dark chocolate layers unfold wavering with ripe cherries and raspberries.
Impactful yet sweet tannins elevate the body to a weightless finish of ethereal perpetuity.
As best as a Cabernet could get to serve at an elaborate Thanksgiving feast, this is the one.
What the Winery Says
- Pax Mahle
- 100% Cabernet Sauvignon
- Farella Vineyard & Vare Vineyard
- Coombsville & Oak Knoll, Napa Valley
- 18 months
- 100% neutral French oak