Quite often I cheat a bit and go outside the original guidelines I set up for this wine blog, and review a wine a few dollars above the $15 limit I try to stay under. Then there are times like these when I just blow it out of the water. Those times are however, few and far between. This past New Year's Eve just happened to be one of those times. New Year's Eve also happens to be my birthday, and on this particular one I turned 40 years old. I had originally set out to spend a few hours browsing the local Total Wine store, and find a bottle of Napa Cabernet in the $75 range. So, when I first got to the store, I found the bottle I intended to buy, and then decided to go find some additional wines for this blog while I thought a bit longer if that was actually the bottle I was going to buy. When I was all set to go back and put it in my cart, I starting getting into an interesting conversation with one of the very helpful individuals at this store. What ended up happening was that he actually talked me down from the original bottle I had (to remain unnamed), which was $70, to this bottle of Chappellet Cabernet at around $50. He almost had me go with a blend from Washington State called Cadence, which he said he would put up against any of the wines I was looking at, but in the end, I decided to go with the pure Napa Cab.
My wife and I ordered a nice sushi spread for dinner, and we sat down really looking forward to tasting this wine. From the get go, this wine had a lot going for it. Even the pour into my glass made this wine look good. It had a very silky look to it, and was a deep, dark red color. The aroma was really nice, with a full berry smell, and hints of chocolate. As good as the look and smell of this wine was, the taste and feel of this wine was off the charts. The word that most comes to mind was consistent. It was velvety smooth from the very first taste, had great length had more hints of chocolate, and maybe even a little coffee, and finished with the same great structure it started with. I knew I had some really good sushi to get to, but I was enjoying the wine so much, I slowly finished that glass before putting any food in my mouth. I sometimes wonder if certain wines are worth the extra money, and I'm not going to get int he habit anytime soon of buying $50 bottles of wine, but as a special occasion, it was more than worth it. I need to take a little off for the price, but this is as close to a 5.0 as I have ever had.
Rating: 4.75 corks (Treat yourself, I did!)