The 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon Samantha's shows a deeper, inkier expression of Oakville Cabernet. Inky blue and black fruit, smoke, licorice, tobacco and graphite meld together as the 2012 opens up in the glass. Mocha, plums and incense add nuance. Many of the lots are fermented in barrel, which gives the finished wine much of its signature intensity and tannin profile. Ideally, readers should give the 2012 another few years to soften, as the tannins are quite pronounced. (AG)
A bold, assertive style that packs in a lot of flavor, with dense dark berry, mocha, mineral, cedar and loamy earth notes driving the core flavors. Though big and rowdy, there's a measure of finesse and suppleness here that moves to the forefront. Drink now through 2028. (JL)
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2013 Chateau Ste. Michelle "Cold Creek Vineyard" Columbia Valley Cabernet Sauvignon (Elsewhere $30)