Friday 12 June 2015

The Somewhereness Of Spottswoode - A Vertical Tasting Of Estate Cabernet Sauvignon

A have stolen the title above from a brochure that Beth Novak Milliken brought with her when she visited Stockholm some weeks ago. Divine invited and I really enjoyed the passion and honesty that Beth Novak dispalyed.
Info here.

2013 Sauvignon Blanc
First up, two vintages of their Sauvignon Blanc. The 2013 has an easy going, grassy nose with notes of elderberries, white currants and a hint of matchbox. Very good.
The taste is cool and fairly elegant with notes of grass, nettles and dried papaya. A fine acidity. A medium long, cool finish. For early consumption.
86p   (tasted 2015/05)

2014 Sauvignon Blanc
This is a different creature. The major components are the same but there is added depth and refinement. And a very fine creamy character. Very, very good.
The taste is more concentrated than the 2013 and the acidity is high and salivating. This is a fine bottle of Sauvignon Blanc that surely can develop over the coming 3+ years, although it is hard to resist today.
90p   (tasted 2015/05)

Then we had an impressive flight of the Estate Cabernet Sauvignon, ranging from 1991 up to 2012.
1991 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon
Two bottles were opened. From the one I tasted first it showed a soft, mature nose with notes of plums, Christmas spices, dried up black currant jam and some chocolate aromas.
The taste is mature and warm with notes of red and black currants, dry earth, Christmas spices and leather. A tad short on the finish. I would have scored this bottle 85p, but then I got the chance to taste the second bottle and that displayed a fresher fruit, a better mid palate and a longer finish. But it is still a wine that have seen it best years.
88p   (tasted 2015/05)

1996 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon
The 5 year younger Estate shows more vigour in the form, on the nose, of ripe black currants, expensive leather, graphite and tobacco. A very fine warmth and a nice depth. Very, very good.
The taste is almost fully mature with lots of fresh, ripe black currant fruit and additional notes of cold coffee, leather, plums and some smoke. A long, intense finish. This is good. Very drinkable now but will surely stay on this level for 5+ years.
91p   (tasted 2015/05)

2000 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon
This 15 year old wine displays an impressive nose with notes of ripe black currants, graphite, fne tobacco, scorched earth and a hint of eukalyptus. Deep and complex. Really fine. Has begun its maturity but has a long way to go.
The taste is tight and focused with a fine core of sweet black currants and additional notes of blueberries, clay, lead pencil shavings and leather. The finish goes on for over a minute and ends with a dry twist. Drinking very weel today but I guess it will become even better with 5+ years in the cellar.
93p   (tasted 2015/05)

2005 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon
A deep, warm and somewhat meaty nose with notes of sweet black currants, plums, hot earth and warm herbs. Good and deep but a bit chunky.
The taste is warm, open for business and fruity with notes of plums, asphalt, hot coffee and leather. Some maturity. A rather warm character. I would not gamble on this becoming better with age. The least impressive wine in the line up.
88p   (tasted 2015/05)

2008 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon
And then the winner is poured. This beauty showcases a deep, refined nose with notes of just ripening black currants, blueberry bushes, graphite, sun warm rocks and a hint of expensive tobacco. Very, very fine. A perfumed note of cedar and gravel.
The taste is velvety yet firm with fine notes of ripe black currants, graphite, leather, spices and a hint of mint. Firmly polished tannins. Long and fine. This is really fine, and will become even better in 5+ years. Great wine!
95p   (tasted 2015/05)

2010 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon
The 2010 has obviously got a perfect score from Parker. Not from me, and that is what counts :-) But make no mistake, it is a really fine wine. The nose is deep and focused with notes of lead pencil shavings, black currant jam, spices, expensive leather and warm gravel. Intensity and refinement combined. Very, very good.
The taste is young, taut and concentrated with notes of ripe black currants, red liquorice, dark chocolate and warm spices. Velvety yet virile tannins. A long, long finish. This will become even better than today with 6-8 years in the cellar. But will it become a perfect wine? I doubt it. But who cares (except speculators), it is, as someone would say, an awesome wine!
94p   (tasted 2015/05)

2011 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon
A young, fruity, open nose with notes of plums, Christmas spices, warm earth, a touch bonfire and some dark chocolate. Very good. A fine sweetness to the fruit. Should develop nicely over the years.
The taste is young, tight and focused with lots of ripe black currants, chocolate covered blueberries, black olives and tobacco. Fine, sandy tannins. Long and really fine. This is very, very good.
92p   (tasted 2015/05)

2012 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon
The newest kid on the block displays a young, tight nose with notes of black currants, cigarette ash, bakelite and new leather. Very, very good. A fine coolness to the fruit. A bit restrained though, in a good way. Needs time.
The taste is young, tight and seedy with notes of red and black currants, gravel, tobacco and a touch of cinnamon. The finish is long and savoury. A nice, young mouth feel. This will surely turn out fine, just wait 6+ years.
91p   (tasted 2015/05)

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