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2005 Ridge Cabernet Sauvignon Monte Bello (750ml)
Producer: Ridge Vineyards ridgewine.com
Appellation: Santa Cruz Mountains - California - United States (AVA)
Type: red
Varietal: Cabernet Sauvignon - Merlot - Petit Verdot - Cabernet Franc
Maturity: Drink
Rating: Outstanding
Est. Price: US$129.99
Tasting Notes:
tasted: October 24, 2009 , Tony Thompson
rated: November 30, 2007 , Stephen Tanzer wineaccess.com/expert/tanzer
95 points "(70% cabernet sauvignon, 22% merlot, 6% petit verdot and 2% cabernet franc) Deep ruby. Explosively perfumed nose offers a profound bouquet of ripe cherry, blackcurrant, yellow rose, Asian spices and vanilla bean; you could use this for incense. Deep and sweet but remarkably precise, offering powerful dark berry and kirsch flavors supported by substantial, velvety tannins. The fruit plows through the finish with superb energy, depth and clarity, fully absorbing the tannins. A big but wonderfully balanced example of Monte Bello, and sure to reward extended cellaring. "
rated: December 1, 2008 , Wine & Spirits wineandspiritsmagazine.com
97 points "The vines at Ridge's Monte Bello estate vineyard, at altitudes from 1,300 to 2,660 feet above the Pacific, consistently produce one of the greatest cabernet sauvignons in California. In 2005, a cold, wet spring cut yields to one ton per acre, the lowest level in ten years. The summer and fall ripened that small crop into something extraordinary. That season highlighted the factors that distinguish this wine: the maturity of the cabernet sauvignon vines, some that date to 1949; the limestone subsoils that sustain the vines without irrigation; the native yeast fermentations and the skill of the blending team, which selected half of the production for this final blend (in addition to 70 percent cabernet sauvignon, it includes merlot, petit verdot and cabernet franc). It tastes like an authentic California wine, with the flavor of mountain-grown fruit-tiny berries, very dark in color and not a lot of them. The tannins have the intensity of wild blueberries, a soft power that's friendly rather than austere. Its fresh, bright floral aspects combine seamlessly with the structure, pointing up the wine's youthful beauty. The moderate alcohol (13.4 percent) is just one more factor that predicts a long life ahead for this wine. (2,000 cases) Ridge Vineyards, Cupertino, CA "