Bottle Notes, Cabernet Sauvignon

2003 Dalla Valle Cabernet Sauvignon – Bottle Notes

Dalla Valle Vineyards was founded in 1986 by Gustav and Naoko Dalla Valle, who purchased 21 acres on the east side of Silverado Trail on Oakville Hill. They planted the vineyards to Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc and had their first crush in 1986. Dalla Valle produces a Cabernet Sauvignon and a very limited amount of a proprietary red named Maya, after the couple’s daughter. Maya usually contains 45-55% Cabernet Franc, and Robert Parker has written that the finest Cabernet Franc in “the New World is from Dalla Valle’s vineyard.” Though Gustav Dalla Valle died in 1995, Naoko has continued to run the winery.

Decanted for about two hours.

Purple in color with just a hint of bricking at the edge of the glass. 13.5% ABV. Tremendous nose of red and blue fruits, cigar box, leather and pencil shavings. More old school California Cabernet in profile than I expected. Currants, cassis liqueur, blueberries and cherries on the palate. The finish is exceptionally long with pronounced coarse tannins. Stunning Cabernet and well stored bottles will drink beautifully for another 2-4 years.

My rating: 94 points.

Dalla Valle wines are only available via the mailing list. The current vintage runs $175 and will be released later this Fall.

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