Wine of the Week: Caymus Vineyards 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon
"Life is an experience, a Cigar or a bottle of great wine or scotch is there to punctuate that experience." ~ Chuck Wagner.
Consider if you would for just a moment, the comments from Mr. Chuck Wagner who offered up this comment about Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon in an interview he did with Cigar Aficionado long ago, but his words still ring as true today, as they did then "We continue to look at Bordeaux [for inspiration], but we don't try to emulate what they do there; we try to make wine in our own style." and went on to say relating to topic at hand, "A good cigar is like a great wine; once you finish a glass, it calls you back for another." I couldn't agree more with the message he was attempting convey there, Napa is Napa, Bordeaux is Bordeaux, get over the idea of two ever being the same.
This was my experience with the bottle of Caymus, which was opened the night before Cabernet Day. Just like a great painting or wonderfully composed piece of music, its artistry calls, no I say beckons you back again and again. It was that good, and I would love to see this same wine again in 2019 and 2029, if I live that long. Just a delightful media sample, shared with friends and fellow vinosapiens on a crusty, warm evening in San Diego, at a place I like to call Chez Vino.
The Caymus 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon is a great representation of the power and elegance that a Napa Cab can deliver. Immediately after it was decanted the aromas escaping from the decanter thrilled me like the coming attraction of a summer block-buster movie. This wine is a velvet rope of ripe sophistication; seldom encountered in wines in lower price points [SRP $89 most places] dark ripe fruit, like blackberry, baked blueberry and a vein of black licorice.
The finish is long and penetrates deep down, to the core of your palate. Go-go Rutherford fruit, wow, wham-bam thank you ma'am, this is how you do it. Pure hedonism without apology, a wine to delight the senses and for those who simply like to indulge their passions for living large. It has the stuffing [great structure] to hang around for many years, but is immediately approachable after a bit of recommended decanting. This wine makes my point so much more eloquently than I could with my words; you can pay more, but you won't get more. My score on this wine is 96 points; what are you waiting for go get yourself a few bottles or better yet a case of this real "crowd-pleaser".
Consider for a moment the statement above from Mr. Wagner; it reveals a salient point that I think SO many miss [flat out run by] when I hear some folks talk about old world vs. new world vino styles and how those differences define one style as being so much better than the other. But, I think what he's trying to say in wine terms is; stay true to yourself and don't try to be something you are not. He really brings the point home by quoting Gore Vidal who once said; "Style is knowing who you are, what you want to say, and not giving a damn.”
I'll raise a glass to that philosophy and also agree that when it comes to producing wine in the Napa Valley, yes, look to Bordeaux for"inspiration", but to emulation I say no. Until next time folks, remember life is short, don't settle for commodity wines, explore, taste and enjoy each moment you have, because you never know when it will be the last cork you pop, my hope for each one you is to sip long and prosper cheers!