Aromas of blueberry jam, black berry, cherry cola, pepper, cedar, and allspice. The limiting soils from which this fruit came from, gives the wine intense tannin and structure, yet a rich and concentrated depth in the palate.
This powerful Howell Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon has wonderful red fruit aromas in the glass. It starts with some strawberry, cherry, raspberry, cherry cola, and black berry aromas. There is some underlying vanilla, clove, anise, and coffee notes as well.
Since 1987, the Oliver family has been growing grapes at Star Vineyard on the western side of the Rutherford Bench. The vineyard contains carefully selected classic Bordeaux clones as well as local heritage Cabernet clones that are sustainably farmed in gravelly bale loam soils.
Although at a higher elevation, the vineyard is actually warmer than the valley floor most nights but cooler during the day. At harvest, it is the first Cabernet Sauvignon vineyard to arrive at the winery, often beating our Carneros Chardonnay. The vineyard management by Luis Garlbay, is meticulous, he knows every single vine.
The 2014 Johanna Cabernet Sauvignon is a dynamic blend of valley fruit sourced primarily from Oakville and St. Helena augmented with mountain fruit from Diamond Mountain. It opens with appealing ripe red plum and blackberry notes fortified by a distinct dark chocolate element. On the palate it is full-bodied with macerated black cherry and blackberry compote, dark chocolate and sweet baking spice. Densely fruited and well-structured, this wine begs to be paired with rich meat dishes.
Riveting dark violet floral aroma overtones frame intense blackberry, plum, and rhubarb notes and oak-driven nuances of cocoa powder and cinnamon. Youthful, exuberant fruit flavors of blueberry, black cherry, and rhubarb saturate the creamy, rich palate. Ripe powdery tannins lead to a long, polished, plush finish.
95 points, Antonio Galloni
"Broad, ample and structured, the 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon Armstrong Ranch has more than enough fruit to fill out its large-scaled frame nicely. Blue/blackish fruit, graphite, violets and plums are all beautifully delineated in the glass. The Armstrong Ranch is tense, energetic and also opulent, with a compelling interplay of fruit, acidity and tannin that never lets up. "- December 2014