Napa and Sonoma Cabernet 2009: panel tasting results
Oakville Ranch, Oakville, Napa Valley
Decanter average score: 18.5pts/20 (95/100pts)
Individual judge’s scores: Stephen Brook 18.5 Yohann Jousselin MS 18.5 David Motion 18.5
Women rule at Oakville Ranch. Londoner Mary MacInnes Miner and her American husband Bob Miner purchased Oakville Ranch in 1989, but Bob’s death in 1994 left Mary in charge. She now relies on sales and marketing manager Shelia Gentry and winemaker Anne Vawter to enhance the brand. The ‘token’ male is vineyard manager Phil Coturri, a buddy of Grateful Dead band members and proponent of organic practices. Oakville Ranch is a sleeper among superstars – its wines become more complex with every vintage.
Stephen Brook: Super-ripe blackcurrant nose, with minty notes. Rich but firm, with some welcome austerity. The palate is less flamboyant than the nose, with robust tannins. Has ample acidity and persistence, but the fruit quality is excellent, as is the balance.
Yohann Jousselin MS: A ripe style of Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa, it offers a lot of baked, dark fruit aromas given plenty of freshness due to the acidity and vegetal character of the wine. Great balance.
David Motion: A lovely, deep wine with intense levels of concentrated, brambly fruit. A dense, generous offering with plenty of structure and a very long finish.
Price N/A UK oakvilleranch.com