This wine is pretty bad especially for the price. Now I remember why I don't buy Somoma wines. I decanted it for 3.5 hrs. When I first opened it, the wine tasted almost "sour" as the grapes were picked way too early. A lot of the other descriptions I read said it has a lot of herbal tastes and that is definitely true. After about 3 hours of decanting, the herbal tasting has become a little less evident. However it is still there. It is a really bad bottle of wine and I am really disappointed that the winery would actually release this wine. I have been buying their wine for the past 7-8 years. Their wines are more "old-school" and need a lot of aging. Hence I am just finally beginning to drink my wines and this is not a good start to their cab offerings. If this wine was $15 bottle of wine it would be considered decent. But for $50, it is a really bad bottle of wine. Maybe it will get better in another 5-8 yrs but I doubt it. Sorry to be so blunt, but I call it as I see or in this case drink it.
bottle was decanted for 1 hour prior to tasting blind. Never would have guessed a California Cab. Given herbal notes, dark color & minerality I guessed a Northern Rhone Syrah - very humbling. Cedar / herbal / black currants / blackberry on nose & palate. Tannins are stout but the wine has great acidity, providing freshness lacking in some CA cabs and is a very well made wine. I was so angry at my guess that I did not score at the time but this was a treat to try. I would love to try this wine with 5+ years of bottle age.
The effort here is clearly restrained. An extremely enjoyable wine in it's youth that will gain nuance with age. It is a rare expression of California Cab. Very much analogous to the approach of Philippe Melka. These are the only American Cabernets that I have tasted that express the sexy roundness of the old world combined with the premier quality of viticulture and terroir that exists here on our soil. Those searching for a typical American muscle car of a wine must not venture here. This is simply modern California sophistication at its best. I congratulate Arnot-Roberts for delivering a wine that is creative in its style and supple in all elements.
changed my view of cali cabernet. just what I need, another region to focus on. thought it was great. Tasted like california cabernet without all of the heaviness, jamminess etc. It had that fresh palate cleansing quality on the finish that makes you want to keep drinking (the same quality as 07 clape cornas has).
Delicate and feminine in styling relative to most. Nose is somewhat reticent at this point. Palate of red fruits, very modest oak, and a hint of cassis. Also some "green". Not "bell pepper" but rather a sense of freshness and purity. Quite complex and long given its medium weight. Overall, still a bit tight, but shows a lot of promise for the future if a person likes the styling. With only one other bottle, I think I'll hide it away until 2015 or so.