The Blind Drunks 1997 California Cab Retrospective Dinner

Dunham Woods Riding Club, Wayne, Illinois
Tasted Friday, December 5, 2008 by AllRed with 285 views

Introduction

One of our tasters, Sue, is a member at Dunham Woods and worked with the chef to put together a great dinner around the '97 Cabernet theme. The wines were served blind, in brown paper bags, and randomly mixed into two flights. Dinner was very good and executed perfectly by the kitchen and service staff.

Flight 1 - A proper start to the evening - the bubblies. (3 Notes)

The bubblies were served with a selection of appetizers from the kitchen while everyone arrived and got comfortable.

Flight 2 - Blind reds, first flight. (6 Notes)

The reds were served with dinner (perfectly cooked rack of lamb), so it was nice to be able to taste the wines alone and with food. After everyone had made their notes, the wines were discussed and unveiled.

  • 1997 Kathryn Kennedy Cabernet Sauvignon

    USA, California, San Francisco Bay, Santa Cruz Mountains

    Aromas of dark fruit, with a slight herbal quality and cassis. Flavors of dark fruit with nice acidity. This was a controversial bottle. Half of the table thought it was corked, the other half thought it was fine. By the end of the flight, everyone flip-flopped from their initial thought. Really strange.

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  • 1997 Ridge Monte Bello 96 Points

    USA, California, San Francisco Bay, Santa Cruz Mountains

    Aromas of smoky dark fruit, meat and currants. Lush and rich, with red currant, cassis, blackberry and smoky woody tones on the palate. A great mouthful of wine, with a long, balanced finish. My wine of the night. Must get more of this.

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  • 1997 Whitehall Lane Cabernet Sauvignon 92 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    Aromas of red currant, cherry and mint. Red fruit qualities on the palate, with nice length to the finish. Developed a slight pruny quality as it sat in the glass.

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  • 1997 A. Rafanelli Cabernet Sauvignon 95 Points

    USA, California, Sonoma County, Dry Creek Valley

    Notes of tobacco, currants, dried herbs and smoked meat. Full-bodied and well-balanced, with wonderful, lush red fruit, dust tannins, and raspberry notes.

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  • 1997 Silver Oak Cabernet Sauvignon Alexander Valley 92 Points

    USA, California, Sonoma County, Alexander Valley

    Notes of soft red fruit, currants, cherries and sage. Red fruit on the palate, along with cherry and a subtle tart note. Finishes nicely, with medium length.

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  • 1997 Peter Michael Les Pavots 90 Points

    USA, California, Sonoma County, Knights Valley

    Aromas of mint and red currant to start, though it developed a sbtle dishwater-like note with air. Lush red fruit on the palate. Nicely integrated, with a long finish.

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Flight 3 - Second flight. (6 Notes)

We decided to round out the flight and bag the backup KK and mix it in. I was very surprised by how much I prefered wines in the first flight compared to some of the well-known labels that were in this flight.

Flight 4 - One last red & a sweetie. (2 Notes)

As if we needed more wine, Sue opened the Oroppas as we finished dinner, and Brian followed with the Arrowood during dessert.

Closing

Always fun to taste blind, and certainly interesting going a theme such as this. Thanks to everyone for the wines, and to Sue for pulling this together with the club.

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