Cakebread Benchland Select Cabernet Sauvignon 2017
Cakebread is a top-tier winery in the Napa Valley, family owned and operated since 1973 . Today the estate is made up of 15 sites totaling 560 vineyard acres in Carneros, Rutherford, Howell Mountain, Anderson Valley and other prime locations in Napa. Committed to sustainable and organic production in both the vineyard and winery, the Cakebreads have shown their commitment to quality through their years of family teamwork, their stewardship of the land, their care in growing and vinifying individual lots of grapes for each wine and their public programs for healthy living. The result is a world-class winery that crafts distinctive wines and welcomes dedicated visitors year after year.
Jack Cakebread’s first pursuits were on his family’s orchard ranch in Contra Costa county and as his father’s partner in Cakebread’s Garage. While in the Air Force in the 1950s with the Strategic Air Command in North Africa, he developed an interest in photography. In 1959, he studied photography under the master of landscape, Ansel Adams, and established Cakebread Photography. It was in 1972, as the commissioned photographer for Nathan Chroman’s photographic history The Treasury of American Wines, that he stopped one day to see family friends with a 22-acre ranch in Rutherford. Jack casually expressed interest in buying land, and soon received word that his friends were willing to sell. Jack and Dolores Cakebread purchased the ranch, and Jack embarked on his fifth career—winemaking—at age 43.
Benchland Select is a special blend of five clones of Cabernet Sauvignon from two top vineyards in the gently sloping western benchlands of Rutherford and Oakville. These vineyards benefit from cool afternoon shade provided by the Mayacamas Mountains, allowing the grapes to mature at a slow, even pace, and gravelly loam soils affording excellent drainage. Each lot is gently destemmed and fermented separately in small stainless steel tanks designed to maximize color, flavor and tannin extraction. Yeast strains, fermentation temperatures, maceration techniques and barrel aging regimens were specifically tailored to the character of each lot to capture the finest attributes of each vineyard block in the final blend. The blend spent 22 months aging in French oak barrels, 63% new, prior to bottling.
Aromas of dark blackberry, boysenberry and mocha lead onto the palate of dark fruit, roundness and texture. Concentrated flavors of ripe blackberry and fig dance with firm tannins for a rich blackberry and dark chocolate finish. Enjoy with hearty stews, steaks on the grill, or fire-roasted vegetables.
|Region||California, Napa Valley|
Jeb DunnuckOne of the flagship releases, the 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Benchland Select is all Cabernet Sauvignon that spent 22 months in 60% new French oak. Deep purple-hued with a classic Cabernet nose of blackcurrants, cassis, graphite, cedary spice, and chocolate, this puppy hits the palate with full-bodied richness, an elegant, seamless texture, a chalky minerality, and a great finish. It's a smoking good Cabernet Sauvignon that will improve with 2-5 years of bottle age and cruise for two decades or more. This 2017 matches what this estate achieved in 2016 and 2015. Maturity 2023-2043.
Wine SpectatorA lovely wine, with dark cherry, plum, fig and boysenberry fruit melded together, picking up light mulling spice, sassafras and singed juniper notes along the way, before ending with a late flurry of fruit and dark earth hints. Drink now through 2034.
VinousThe 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Benchland Select is another expressive wine in this range from Cakebread. Iron, smoke, cedar, tobacco, licorice and sweet spice all shape this attractive, mid-weight Cabernet Sauvignon. Drinking window: 2020-2027.