Cardinale Cabernet Sauvignon 2019
|California, Napa Valley, Oakville
Pure, classic California notes of crème de cassis, spicy oak, chalky minerality, graphite, and spring flowers emerge from the 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon, a blend of 91% Cabernet Sauvignon and 9% Merlot that's sourced from multiple mountain AVAs in the valley. Full-bodied and powerful on the palate, it has a deep, rich mid-palate, beautiful tannins, notable acidity, and a great, great finish. It's another brilliant wine from Carpenter that can offer pleasure today yet also evolve for 20-25 years or more.
The 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon is one of the most finessed wines I have ever tasted here. That seems to be the direction Chris Carpenter is pursuing of late. So more than a vintage or place (Cardinale is a blend of hillside and valley floor sites) what comes through is the wine's finesse. Floral overtones lift a core of red cherry fruit, pomegranate and blood orange. I imagine the 2019 will enjoy a long life based on its spectacular balance.
The 2019 Cardinale is a blend of 91% Cabernet Sauvignon and 9% Merlot, with the Merlot from a particular block on Howell Mountain. Overall, it's about 80% mountain fruit and 20% valley-floor fruit, according to winemaker Chris Carpenter. Cherries and cassis dominate the nose, while the full-bodied palate is rich and velvety, with a long, mouthwatering finish that adds barrel-derived notes of vanilla, powdered sugar and cedar.
An inviting, fruit-driven style, with a gorgeous display of plum puree and blackberry confiture pumping along, flanked with licorice and apple wood and kept honest with a loamy accent through the finish. Polished in feel overall, but that belies the serious grip. Drink now through 2036. 5,100 cases made.