Sunday, February 27, 2011

Obsidian Ridge 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon

Obsidian Ridge Vineyard
Red Hills Lake County
North Coast, California



     I am taking this break and one more until I get back to our Bordeaux trip, it was supposed to only be one but I have to write about this fabulous value Cabernet Sauvignon.

        I can’t say I have had a wine of this quality for such a great price and value from Northern California in several years. The last time was 2001 and nothing close under $25 has come close to this quality. Back up the truck and make this your house Cabernet or red wine if you like new world wines.  I bought this for $20, but most of you will probably see it in the $25 range.  However, this tastes more like a wine twice the price or more.

       Turns out besides the glowing Robert Parker review that nudged me into picking up a bottle of this to try, Wine and Food Magazine named this as one of their “100 Bottles To Drink Right Now” at #27.

       Lake County is just north of the famed Napa Valley and just east of the Alexander valley in northern Sonoma County. In other words, this land looks kind of like Napa did 30-40 years ago and has attracted many new and pioneering winemakers looking to find great terroir to produce world class Cabernet Sauvignon. Obsidian Ridge is one of the first successful vineyards in this region and the proof is in this bottle. The vineyard is set high in the peaks of the Mayacamas mountain range at 2,640 feet, with steep hillsides and poor soil to stress the vines into producing great fruit to make wine from. These same mountains are the ones the line the west side of the Napa Valley. Obsidian Ridge got its name for its high elevation on a ridge, but more so because the soil is composed of volcanic red dirt and namesake black glass-like shards and chunks of obsidian rocks.

Color:  Deep and vibrant garnet edges frame a dark core

Nose:  Aromas of black cherry, currants, mochas, secondary notes of bell pepper, licorice, hot rocks and charcoal.

Palate:  Rich, but not weighty the flavors fan out to coat the whole palate in black cherry, currants, and a savory mocha. The licorice, spice and oak complement this wine and the finish is a long and pleasing 30-40 seconds. The tannins are well tamed for such big mountain fruit, giving this good structure.

Back up the truck and BUY, BUY, BUY!



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