A fair number of these showed up on deep discount the other day–the whole set: Spring Mt., Stags Leap, Rutherford and Napa Valley–and you KNOW I couldn’t resist. I mean–ya GOT to! I’ve found gems with far worse labels and provenance before. This one quickly shows signs of why. Deep ruby with a thin clear rim, a nose of bologna. Seriously: it smells like fresh-cut, moist, pink lunch-meat. Decanted vigorously, it turns slowly to a burnt, roasted-meat sorta nuance: multi-vitamin, B1 and nutritional yeast with very little fruit or briar apparent.
It tastes far better than it smells, but still the omnipresent chemically toasted-ness prevails. Sharp and hot–still no fruit to speak of–a magma of bristly nothingness where finding any fruit becomes a fools errand. Ripe and sweet with basically NOTHING going on one would typically find in even a pedestrian version of cab from this district, it falls short of even valley-floor versions of the variety. Chocolate-coated wet paper seems to be the difinitive place-marks, perhaps a bit of vanilla-oak peeking through in the vaguest sense possible. Tannins are a non-existant affair: the burn merely diluted with sugar and metallic acid.
2015 NAPA HEIGHTS Cabernet Sauvignon Stag’s Leap District Napa Valley 14.5