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01.22.2004

2001 X Winery Napa Cabernet Sauvignon

Cool labels and fancy names for wineries do not always make for good wine. X Winery is staffed by a young, technology minded group of vintners, whose lack of experience and too much focus on the mechanics of the process may be demonstrated in this wine. On the other hand, I may just not like the stuff.

Tasting Notes:
Closed right out of the bottle, but easy to drink (13.9% alcohol), and opening up a little more over time, this wine had some surprisingly sharp tannins and a slightly stringent finish that made it hard to appreciate the pretty heavily extracted black cherry fruit. My sense is that the winemaker was going for some more complex woody and spicy notes in the body of wine, but they come across as more bitter than anything. Just to make sure I wasn't misreading these flavors for complexity, I left the wine on my counter and tasted it over the next couple of days without significant improvement. Because of the heavy tannins, this wine may turn into something more interesting with bottle age. I'm going to toss a bottle into the "do not disturb" section of the cellar, and see what it does in 5 - 7 years.

Food pairing:
Probably would go well with a good rib eye or rosemary rubbed rack of lamb.

Overall score: 6

How much?: $24

Comments (3)

Justin Bradford wrote:
05.29.04 at 2:42 PM

It's always been fascinating to me how subjective wine tasting can be. I had almost the complete opposite experience with this wine when I picked it off the wine list at Isa (Steiner St., SF).

Aromas of dark cherry, blackberry, and black currant with well integrated oak- this wine was clearly outstanding. And the price was supprisingly reasonable. With their recent Parker scores, I wonder how long the price will maintain.

Alder Yarrow wrote:
05.29.04 at 3:38 PM

Indeed. This is not the first time that Parker and I haven't agreed.

For those who are curious, X Winery just received the following scores from the Wine Advocate:

2001 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon: 89
2001 California Cabernet Sauvignon: 89
2002 Lake County Sauvignon Blanc: 87 (previously rated 89 by the Enthusiast)

Erik Peterson wrote:
07.24.05 at 12:29 PM

I have been drinking a case of this wine over the last year and a half and it just keeps getting better! This wine definitely has characteristics of blackberry and a subtle spice which makes it an excellent dinner wine. I recommend anyone try an get ahold of this one while supplies last.

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