Bright ruby-red. Lively aromas of boysenberry, cassis, bitter chocolate, violet and mint. Juicy, firm and bright for the vintage, with none of the roasted character shown by so many '96 cabernets. Alluring sweetness in the middle palate. Finishes with firm but graceful tannins.
The medium-bodied 1996 Cabernet Sauvignon displays some of the attractive gravelly notes often found in this wine, along with black currant fruit, lavender, subtle oak, sweet tannin for the vintage, and a well-balanced, pure finish. (RP)
A vintage of mixed messages in the Napa Valley, 1996 has given Spottswoode a ripe and somewhat early maturing wine with flesh and a certain stewed fruit openness.
At first there's a standoff between drying herb and currant flavors and firm, vibrant tannins. In the end, the flavors and structure compliment each other, making this a complex, satisfying wine that's aging nicely. The best of three bottles.--1996 California Cabernet retrospective. (Web-2007) (JL)
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2007 York Creek "Horseshoe Block" Spring Mountain District Cabernet Sauvignon (Elsewhere $40)