So tonight I was perusing my cellar in an effort to find a bottle of wine to give to a colleague of mine who got a new job. His girlfriend was looking through my cellar listing and came up with a choice, but I thought maybe I could find something that would be a good choice for a new job celebration, but I struck out on that front. But what I didn't strike out on was finding a bottle I forgot I had that I could open and enjoy this evening, the 2005 Kunde Estate Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon! Now I like almost any Cabernet, but this one I always loved for the label, a representation of the California State Seal, which just looked to me like something from a nineteenth century stock certificate, great engraving and lovely allegorical figures. So why not enjoy it tonight?
The color was pure Cabernet loveliness, a deep inky purple at the center and bright ruby along the edges. The nose is pure joy, lovely notes of leather and cassis, with a pure meatiness to it, accented by hints of anise and wonderful dark chocolate notes over the top. The taste was just beautiful, with some dark fruit notes at the outset, ripe plum and black cherry, that gracefully transition to some black licorice, green tea and rich dark chocolate notes midpalate. The mouthfeel is just all around lush, rich and velvety. The finish is just perfect, well structured tannins supporting a long, exceptionally dry finish that seems to last for a minute or more. The kind of wine that you don't give a second thought to sipping all evening long!
Overall I would rate this one a solid 8.5, as it's just a wonderful example of a Cabernet from Sonoma Valley. I can't recall where I got this wine or how much I paid for it, so whether it was a good value is anyone's guess, I just know it was a really good wine! Tonight I am enjoying it with some grilled steak fajitas with homemade guacamole, as the richness of the wine just melds perfectly with the strength of the steak and creaminess of the avocado! So yummy! Oh, and back to my original purpose in perusing my cellar, what bottle did my colleague Brad opt for? The 2007 Stags Leap Artemis, a pretty darn nice bottle to help him celebrate, so cheers Brad and good luck on your new job!