You never know where the tips will come from.
Mitch Johnson, the golf pro at Napa Valley Country Club, introduced me to Shibumi Knoll winery, and I’m glad he did.
“Hey, you should try this Cabernet,” Mitch insisted a couple of weeks ago. “I’ll keep a bottle of it for you.”
The next time we got together he popped the cork on the 2004 Napa Valley Cabernet, and it’s an exciting wine, rich, plush and loaded with dusty currant and blackberry fruit. I later tried it in a blind tasting at my office for a formal review (92 points, 99 cases, $85), which appeared in the Wine Spectator Insider.
The owner is Don Ross, a wine lover and big Bordeaux fan who moved to Napa from the East Bay, across the Bay from San Francisco. The name means “effortless perfection” in Japanese. The grapes come from Ross’ small vineyard from St. Helena, which was once part of Vineyard 29, with the vineyard planted, I’m told, by David Abreu. (Regardless, it’s a terrific wine.)
As good as the Cabernet is, and it’s great, the 2005 Russian River Chardonnay Buena Tierra Vineyard ($45, 172 cases) is even better—amazingly complex and concentrated, with a rich, creamy texture and fantastic length. Not surprisingly, Ross says he was helped by John Kongsgaard with the ’05, but the the winery skipped the difficult 2006 vintage for Chardonnay.
Both wines are worth the hunt.
Mark Sinnott — Mahopac, NY — June 3, 2008 9:11pm ET
Jesse Calderon — June 4, 2008 1:07am ET
Jeffrey Nowak — scottsdale, arizona — June 4, 2008 1:42am ET
Clem Firko — napa ca — June 4, 2008 11:53am ET
Andrew J Walter — Sacramento,CA — June 4, 2008 12:36pm ET
Robert Fukushima — California — June 4, 2008 1:12pm ET
David W Voss — Elkhorn, Wi — June 4, 2008 2:22pm ET
Chris Buddress — June 4, 2008 3:01pm ET
Mark Sinnott — Mahopac, NY — June 4, 2008 4:00pm ET
Steve Lenzo — PHX, AZ — June 4, 2008 7:24pm ET
Mark Lewis — Napa — June 4, 2008 7:35pm ET
Mark Sinnott — Mahopac, NY — June 4, 2008 8:48pm ET
Jesse Calderon — June 6, 2008 12:43am ET
Roger Every — June 10, 2008 12:15pm ET
Kevin Smith — Sunshine State — June 14, 2008 1:48pm ET
Troy Peterson — Burbank, CA — June 19, 2008 1:40am ET
Roger Every — Fishkill. ny — February 18, 2013 4:39pm ET
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