Montelena produces two cuvees of Cabernet. The estate Cabernet Sauvignons, Montelena's flagship wines, have been remarkably consistent. From fruit grown in their Calistoga vineyards, which are dry farmed (non-irrigated), approximately 10,000 cases of this wine are estate-bottled each year. It is hard to find less than a stellar vintage. The 1993 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate (the current release) possesses the most aggressive tannin of the 1993-1996 Estate Cabernets. It is a weighty, hefty, powerful wine, with a dense purple color, ripe, sweet black fruit flavors, considerable muscle and depth, and a spicy, full-bodied, tannic finish. This wine has all the necessary components to age effortlessly for 20+ years. (RP)
Tightly wound, with firm, leathery tannins wrapped around a core of currant, lead pencil, mineral and wild berry. Plenty of acidity and tannins, too. Best to decant. (JL)
Good medium-dark color. Less deep aromas of redcurrant, herbs and loam, plus a whiff of varnish. Smooth on entry, then a bit slighter in the mouth, with a faint tartness. In a rather dumb stage today, having lost its babyfat. A narrower wine than the '94, but still young. The finish features some unresolved acidity and slightly dry tannins. (ST)
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