Corison Napa Valley Cabernet - Three Decades Vertical

Corison Napa Valley Cabernet - Three Decades Vertical


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 This three-bottle boxed set spans three decades!  Included are a bottle each of the 1996, 2006 and 2016 Corison Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon.

Cathy's Tasting Notes Upon Release:
The 1996 Corison Cabernet is graced with a label commemorating our tenth vintage.  Spring that year was very wet, causing considerable shatter at flowering which resulted in a fairly small crop.  Though it started with a very warm spring and hot summer, 1996 made a turn for the better at veraison (berry softening and color change, when ripening and flavor development begins).  The nights got cold and the daytime temperatures moderated, yielding a wine with remarkable concentration and color.  Dark red fruits including plums, black cherries and blackberries dominate the jammy aromas and flavors with loads of spice and hints of vanilla, chocolate and anise adding complexity.  The texture is lush with soft, round tannins.  Our trademark floral perfume of violets is beginning to emerge.  This wine promises many years of enjoyment.      

Cathy's Notes from 25 Vintage Retrospective Tasting, October 2014:
1996 - Dark red with some bricking at the edges. Ripe plum, hints of peppermint, tobacco and floral perfume on the nose. Mouthful of dark, brooding black cherry and blackberry flavors. Hint of tar. Drink or hold.

Harvest Notes, 2006:
Budbreak came very late in 2006 due to cold, rainy weather that continued well into spring. By early June, the sun finally came out and the vines began to bloom and set fruit. Then in mid-July, before veraison, a nasty ten-day heat wave served to limit berry size and helped the vines catch up. (Careful canopy management was essential to avoid sunburn.) Even, cool weather arrived with August and continued through a very late harvest for a nearly perfect ripening season.

Tasting Notes, 2006:
Effusive aromas of ripe boysenberries, black plums, chocolate and nutmeg spice jump out of the glass. Juicy, mouth-filling flavors of berry jam, cassis and cardamom follow with velvet tannins. Uncommonly cool nights throughout the ripening season produced wines with spot-on natural acidity to balance the rare concentration from tiny berries.

Warm weather in April kick-started the nearly perfect season in 2016 on the early side, followed by a moderate July and very cool August. Typical of our autumn weather, a gentle, late heat spell brought the vintage home. There was nary a day over 100F from veraison through harvest, my favorite kind of season. Even more important than daytime highs, nighttime lows were downright cold all summer, preserving good natural acidity.

The 2016 reminds me of the 2014 with the volume turned up a bit. Redolent with bright red currant, blueberry, tart cherry and darker plums, cassis and blackberry fruit, it is wildly complex. The fruit aromatics are complexed by baking spices and floral notes including dried rose petals and violets. Varietal dried herbs add yet another dimension. An alluring yin of minerality and snappy natural acidity play off against the yang of a broad, luscious mouthfeel.Cathy Corison



San Francisco Chronicle
The Chronicle's Top 100 Wines
Elegance and finesse, red fruits, well-integrated oak; drink now or cellar.November 10, 1999Wine Enthusiast Magazine  Best of Year 2000
The Top 100 Wines of the Year
94   Smells very fine and pure.  Classy black currants and toasty oak rule.  Flavors are opulent, rich and ripe, but very balanced.  Gorgeous tannins; soft and accessible.  It defines style and grace.2/1/2000

Decanter Magazine
*****5 stars (18.5) "Gorgeous floral nose...."September 2009VINOGRAPHY: a wine blog
Dark garnet in the glass, this wine smells of black cherry and graphite and a hint of licorice. In the mouth, powdery muscular tannins wrap around a core of black cherry and cocoa powder. Long and rich and deep and broad. Great acidity and depth. Powerful without being overpowering. Mouthwatering. 13.8% alcohol. Score: around 9.5.Alder Yarrow,, 6.27.20152016

View from the Cellar
95   The bouquet is classic, wafting from the glass in a complex and very classy blend of black cherries, sweet dark berries, Cuban cigar wrapper, Rutherford dust, a deft framing of cedary oak and just a hint of eucalyptus in the upper register. On the palate the wine is extremely pure and focused, full-bodied and beautifully bound up in its sophisticated structural chassis, with a gorgeous core of fruit, great soil signature, ripe, buried tannins and superb length and grip on the seamlessly balanced finish. This is stunning juice…John Gilman, July-August 2019, Issue #82Wine Enthusiast Magazine
95 - Cellar Selection  …serious wine, complex and integrated, with intriguing aspects of leather, earth and truffle. Soft and supple, it shows a spiciness of clove and tart red raspberry and cassis, deliciously memorable in every way.September 2019