Bright ruby-red. Penetrating aromas of black cherry, dried flowers and brown spices. Not as silky as the 2004 through 2007 vintages but boasts noteworthy refinement and savory intensity, with fresh, harmonious acidity giving the wine good focus and finesse. Excellent depth here if not quite the flavor development of vintages like '07 and '04. Still, this conveys a thickness of texture and a faintly exotic quality and finishes with very suave tannins. The summer was rather cool but steady, and there was enough warmth in September to ensure ripe tannins without burning off needed acidity, noted Bo Barrett. A fairly elegantly styled Montelena Estate. (ST)
Of the four vintages tasted from the ‘00s, it was tough to pick just two. Like 2005, the 2009 was less muscular, more Bordeaux-like, with a bright, dark red fruit style, smoky spice and a wonderfully silky, caressing texture. At the heyday of high alcohol Napa Cabs, its alcohol is below 14%, partly thanks to a cool summer with no heat spikes and a five-week long harvest from mid-September. (EM)
Montelena's 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate wraps around the palate with serious depth. Even with all of its intensity, the 2009 has a silkiness that makes it incredibly delicious at this early stage. Red berries, flowers, tobacco and sweet herbs all flesh out on the generous, radiant finish. While many 2009s are a bit tight today, Montelena's 2009 Estate is showing very nicely, although it is keeping some cards close to the vest. (AG) 93+
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