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by Fred McMillin
for June 2000

 

Mirror, Mirror,
On the Wall

Which Is Fairest of Them All?

Heitz Cellars  
 

Our Sweet Sixteen

We decided to look at the Winning Wine in each of our last 16 tastings to see what they would teach us. The best wine is listed last.

Rating- Excellent
16th - Cabernet Sauvignon, Silver Oak, Napa Vly., '95, $75
15th - "Encounter" red blend, Gary Farrell, Sonoma County, '96, $42
14th - Pinot Noir, Byron, Santa Maria Vly., '96, $40
13th - "Tapestry" red blend, Beaulieu, Napa Vly., '96, $35
12th - Library Collection Meritage, Kautz, California, '94, $25
11th - Cabernet Sauvignon, Corison, Napa Vly., '96, $45
10th - Late-Harvest Dessert Zinfandel, Rosenblum, CA, '95, $15(375 ml.)

Rating- Superb
9th - Rosé Reserve Champagne, Veuve Clicquot, France, '88, $65
8th - Presidents Selection Shiraz, Mildara Blass, Aussie, '96, $18
7th - Zinfandel, Blockheadia Ringnosii, Napa Vly., '97, $25
6th - Cabernet Sauvignon Trailside, Heitz, Napa Vly., '94, $49 (pictured)
5th - Lake William red blend, Jarvis, Napa Vly., '97, $58
3rd (tie) - Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve, Peju Province, Napa Vly., '96, $75
3rd (tie) - Petit Verdot, Guenoc, Napa Valley, '95, $40
2nd - Demi-Sec Champagne, Veuve Clicquot, NV, $45

The Fairest of Them All
1st - De Latour Private Reserve Cab, Beaulieu, Napa Vly., '96, $75
 

Observations

a)    No Merlot labels (tho it's in some blends)
b)    Nothing labelled Chardonnay. No still whites wines of any grape.
c)    Best Buy—The 8th-place Australian Presidents Selection by Mildara Blass.
d)   Only two wineries garnered two spots, Clicquot and Beaulieu.

 

The Two Big Winners

e)   District—Supplying the grapes for nine of the 16 wines, the Napa Valley dominated the action.
f)   Varietal—Present in nine of the 16 wines was the most noble of the red wine grapes, Cabernet Sauvignon.

 

We're Number One!

The February 4th WineDay selected Beaulieu as the California winery of the century and quoted the great Leon Adam's opinion of our Fairest Wine Winner: "Beaulieu Private Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon is the single most sought-after American wine." My tasters agree.

 


This page created June 2000

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