2011 was not a great year for Cabernet Sauvignon’s in Napa Valley, or at least many believe it to be true. This wine bucks the trend from the Coombsville sub-AVA in Napa Valley. It has been two years since I last opened a 2011 Shadybrook Estate Cabernet Sauvignon. Its transformation continues as it has been resting in the cellar. Obviously when purchased it was very good, but some eight years laying down has made this wine continue to impress. When originally released, winemaker Rudy Zuidema used descriptors as “lush, opulent and finely structure” to open his winemakers notes. This wine used a combination of Clones 337 and 7 of Cabernet Sauvignon grapes. Clone 7 per Rudy was “added density to the nose and palate with black fruit, mocha and a bit of chocolate”. The equal part of Clone 337 contributed “elegance and aromatics lure of the wine with notes of spice, red fruit and cedar”. 6% of Malbec was added to provide background flavors of Asian spices per Rudy.
This evening on the eyes, a very dark red with just a hint of purple on the edges. The viscosity was medium heavy giving a clue as to what is to come. The bouquet on the nose raspberries was the predominant aroma and with mountain flowers. On the palate a cacophony of black fruit, chocolate, red fruit and gentle oak leaped about in the mouth. The finish was tiered and long lasting with a slight “soft and allusive” sweetness. The structure was strong and the tannins silky smooth with no obvious edges.
Just upon the first sip, I once again bestowed high marks on the wine. This will make my best wines tasted in 2022. Having recently tasted the 2016 Shadybrook Cabernet Sauvignon, this is a wine to buy for your cellar or to enjoy right away. Retail is $125 and is generally allocated.
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