If you have been hanging out at Pulling The Cork you know we are in the middle of our first Taste & Talk series with Jeff Miller of Artisan Family of Wines. You can get caught up by checking out Part 1 and Part 2 of our conversation with Jeff as well as our video review of Artisan's 2008 Red Côte Rosé.
Today on PTC TV we are going to taste and review one more of Artisan's wines before we go back to sharing other parts of our conversation with Jeff. The wine for todays episode is the 2005 Sly Dog Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon.
Jeff will get into some detail about the wine in today's episode but here are a couple of quick facts. The 2005 vintage is the second release of Sly Dog Cellars Cabernet. It comes from the well known Red Hills District of Lake County in California which is highly regarded for its distinct terroir. The soil composition is mostly red gravely loam which allows for deep root penetration of the vine resulting in small and intensely flavorful grapes. Temperatures during the day are very hot with very cool nights - ideal growing conditions for Cabernet Sauvignon.
Our final written tasting notes are below the video and we are also providing a link to Artisan's recommended Chocolate Cabernet Sauvignon Cake. It is sinfully good! Enjoy this episode of PTC TV and the Sly Dog Cellars Cabernet!
Please note: Pulling The Cork received this wine as a sample from Artisan Family of Wines.
2005 Sly Dog Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon - USA, California, North Coast, Red Hills Lake County
DAY 1 - Decanted for 1 hour, this wine wine was clear with a deep and intense garnet core and slight ruby at the edge. The nose revealed rose petals, raspberry, black cherry and plum with a bouquet of vanilla and white pepper. The nose moderate in intensity but the aroma and bouquet were quite easily identifiable. In the mouth this was medium bodied with a perfect balance of acidity and tannin. The tannins were firm and refined. Unlike many California Cabs these days this was not an extracted fruit bomb but much more elegant with ripe raspberry, black cherry, juicy black plums and meat (game?) with subtle hints of vanilla, cedar and white pepper. The finish was moderately long with dark plums, dark cherry and raspberry lingering with a touch of vanilla. There were some nice layers and a decent amount of complexity make this a very nice and excellent value at $14.99 a bottle. Interested to see how it is fairing tomorrow.
DAY 2 - The wine has now been in the decanter for around 19 hours. The nose is now much more intense with black cherry, cassis, blackberry, vanilla, smoke and dark chocolate. The mouthfeel remained a medium body but was a touch more full with the acidity and tannins still in great balance for such a long time in the decanter. The acidity made the fruit flavors of black cherry, blackberry, and raspberry really stand up considering the length of time it has been out of the bottle. There was vanilla, a hint of anise and dark chocolate shavings behind the fruit. The finish was still moderately long but the wine now had more layers to it and became a tad more complex. On the finish it left behind black cherry, dark chocolate and vanilla. I think the tannin and acidity levels should allow this to age well for the next 5-7 years, maybe longer, but it is drinking very well right now. This is a very elegant and smooth drinking California Cabernet; a very nice change of pace from so many fruit bomb Cabernet that seems to dominate so much of the market. The price is incredibly low for a wine of this quality. Highly recommended! 50+5+13+16+7=91 pts (click here to learn more about what these number mean)