Mayacamas, Napa Valley, Mt. Veeder, Cabernet Sauvignon 1998
base neck or better; very lightly bin-soiled label
93 points Vinous
Savory, floral and mineral notes abound in a wine with gorgeous aromatic complexity, but little in the way of typical Napa Valley fruit. Cedar, smoke, tobacco, sage and leather are some of the many notes
The 1998 Cabernet Sauvignon, coming from a cooler vintage in Napa Valley, remains true to style. Even as it settles into its second decade in the bottle, the wine retains a freshness and an expression of place. Notes of sage, chocolate, and espresso bean still dominate, along with the noble signs of age—cedar, softening tannins, and a caramel note on the finish. Though it indeed has potential to rest longer in the cellar, it will surely be enjoyed by anyone opening it now.
This wine is very alive yet subtle, sharply defined while smoothly put together, and entering its prime. The nose is awash in cedar, pine needles, graphite, ash red cherry, and dark plum notes. On the palate, the red cherry character takes over, along with pine and dried cranberries lingering long on the finish. The fine tannins are present as a background, and the acidity is taut, holding it together. This is a complex, old-school , multi layered Cabernet Sauvignon.
Blend: 92% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Merlot, 4% Cabernet Franc