Oh When The Saints

Deep dark garnet–the orange-tinged hue is surprising for something this young. But it’s deep and dark and opaque. Brightly burnt bouquet, gritty and dense, spitting out fire and ground cherries. I’m gonna decant the snot outa this thing. There’s big cassis and peaty earth in there but oh my is it buried under this wall of fairly un-complex concentration.

I don’t generally engage in *the story*, but this thing needs some air and St. Clement has a history like As The World Turns–unfortunately none of it under-sexed and over-busted housewives hiding in curtains with knives though. Merely it holds the record for corporate buy-outs in one lifespan. And it’s one of the “old ones”, dating nearly to the Class of 72. Yes, I have a very clear idea when I drive up 29 or Silverado Trail as to who *belongs* and who is new. Of course, my “new” brands are ones you’ve been drinking your whole life. Shit, I remember when Opus 1 opened. I consider them “new”. I couldn’t even tell you the different owners of St. Clement–no memory for that–but in the list of ones I DO recall are Sapporo (Oroppas spelled backwards, get it? Get it? Get it???) and of course Treasury, who grabbed it up in their bottle-gobble (maybe from Beringer? or Canadiagua?) and then recently did the fashionable corporate guillotine of severing the property from the label–keeping the sticky white paper they can slap on any bottle they want–made by anyone from anywhere–and shucking off the property, tasting room, vineyards, and estate production facilities to some well-heeled out-of-towner who wants to keep a weekend stash of cigars in the 94574.

Well, I’ve certainly blown enough air. So much for not being Wine 101. Wonder if the wine has had enough air?

In the mouth… Dude, I still can’t get over the smell of this thing. It is a black burnt wall of obfuscation, torture and unforgiveness. In the mouth, a watery butter, ridiculously coating and staining, gritty and hot, staggeringly unbalanced. The fruit is something my 4-year-old could draw: a pastel portrait of cheap dessert on an aggrandized, out-of-dimension landscape.

This wine is a massive conundrum of smells and tastes. And I believe big boozy reds exhibiting disparities of smell and taste profiles probably sell quite well to the less-discerning. I think dissonance and confusion can often be mistook for complexity.

2013 ST CLEMENT Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley 14.9


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