Chateau Montelena

The Montelena Estate Calistoga Cabernet Sauvignon

9.2110 ratings
9.120 pro ratings
Calistoga, Napa Valley, California, USA
Cabernet Sauvignon
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9.5

Bright red-ruby. Exceptional aromatic purity and complexity to the aromas of blueberry, cassis, cocoa powder, mocha, spices and minerals; some very ripe berry pie notes emerged with air. Wonderfully creamy, silky and deep; an utterly seamless wine with the underlying soil-driven minerality to energize and frame its fleshy flavors of dark fruits and spices. This is yet another 2010 whose impression of refinement belies the weather extremes of the growing season. Finishes with building but perfectly integrated tannins and outstanding length. This is already approaching its plane of peak drinkability but I'd still want to hold my bottles for at least a few more years. ("You really had to be a good farmer in 2010," noted Bo Barrett) (Stephen Tanzer, Vinous, May 2020)

Bright red-ruby. Exceptional aromatic purity and complexity to the aromas of blueberry, cassis, cocoa powder, mocha, spices and minerals; some very ripe berry pie notes emerged with air. Wonderfully creamy, silky and deep; an utterly seamless wine with the underlying soil-driven minerality to energize and frame its fleshy flavors of dark fruits and spices. This is yet another 2010 whose impression of refinement belies the weather extremes of the growing season. Finishes with building but perfectly integrated tannins and outstanding length. This is already approaching its plane of peak drinkability but I'd still want to hold my bottles for at least a few more years. ("You really had to be a good farmer in 2010," noted Bo Barrett) (Stephen Tanzer, Vinous, May 2020)

May 27th, 2020
Josh Luhn

Luhn Wine Consulting Owner, Luhn Family Wines

9.2

Needs a lot of time to integrate. Wait until at least 2020. Then you'll have some hindsight. 😎

Needs a lot of time to integrate. Wait until at least 2020. Then you'll have some hindsight. 😎

1 person found it helpfulSep 20th, 2015
Jeremiah Allen

Love the classics!

Love the classics!

Jun 7th, 2015
Knightsbridge Wine Shoppe

Youthful and delicious. Red currant and cherry with a moderate amount if oak. Quite forward and supple now but with underlying structure for aging.

Youthful and delicious. Red currant and cherry with a moderate amount if oak. Quite forward and supple now but with underlying structure for aging.

Aug 11th, 2014
Aaron Skrivan

Nice earthy aromas. different CAB than i was expecting from a young napa cab

Nice earthy aromas. different CAB than i was expecting from a young napa cab

Feb 20th, 2017
Mike Mayer

A graceful, elegant wine from an iconic winery. Beautiful scents of cigar box and blueberries lift from the glass. Wonderful flavors of dark fruit, mocha, licorice with a sleek tannic backbone. A really nice finish.

A graceful, elegant wine from an iconic winery. Beautiful scents of cigar box and blueberries lift from the glass. Wonderful flavors of dark fruit, mocha, licorice with a sleek tannic backbone. A really nice finish.

Sep 18th, 2016
Giovanni Bartolini

2010 vintage, medium bodied, smokey, subtle French oak, smooth light cherry, nice tannin, flinty soil character, could have laid down longer, great with pan seared boneless rib eye, with Laura Pausini singing romantic Italian songs in the background...

2010 vintage, medium bodied, smokey, subtle French oak, smooth light cherry, nice tannin, flinty soil character, could have laid down longer, great with pan seared boneless rib eye, with Laura Pausini singing romantic Italian songs in the background...

Jul 7th, 2016
Gregory Summers

Very good balance of dark chocolate and red berries...smooth with good texture. Enjoyed this much as a special occasion res wine.

Very good balance of dark chocolate and red berries...smooth with good texture. Enjoyed this much as a special occasion res wine.

Apr 17th, 2016
Jim Stehli

Dark red cherries. Balanced but light chalk and lean alcohol finish. Enjoying but needs food; meat and cheese.

Dark red cherries. Balanced but light chalk and lean alcohol finish. Enjoying but needs food; meat and cheese.

Apr 2nd, 2016
Darin See

How does the saying go... don't look a gift horse in the mouth? Well, bite me with horse teeth, but even though this bottle was a gift, and it's supposed to be amazing (or at least great) this jockey isn't smitten. The nose, in all seriousness, is a cross between freshly cut grass and Michelin tire rubber. If this wine were a restaurant, maybe that'd be a good thing. But it's a wine, people, and in all honesty, there's little pleasure here. Maybe I opened it too soon, you'd suggest? Well of course, you might be right. 2016 could be too soon. But if it's fabulous in 2020 and I'm dead and disseminated, what good would have waiting ten vs. five years done me? Carpe diem, people.

How does the saying go... don't look a gift horse in the mouth? Well, bite me with horse teeth, but even though this bottle was a gift, and it's supposed to be amazing (or at least great) this jockey isn't smitten. The nose, in all seriousness, is a cross between freshly cut grass and Michelin tire rubber. If this wine were a restaurant, maybe that'd be a good thing. But it's a wine, people, and in all honesty, there's little pleasure here. Maybe I opened it too soon, you'd suggest? Well of course, you might be right. 2016 could be too soon. But if it's fabulous in 2020 and I'm dead and disseminated, what good would have waiting ten vs. five years done me? Carpe diem, people.

Feb 7th, 2016