I’ve always been a fan of the founder of Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars, Warren Winiarski. Responsible for the Cab heard round the world in 1976, when Napa’s reds and whites outclassed the best of France in a blind tasting known as the Judgment of Paris, Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars has consistently produced some of the very best Cabernet Sauvignon in the Napa Valley. As the 40th anniversary of the Judgment of Paris rapidly approaches, it seemed fitting to me this afternoon to review a Cab from the winery that put Napa’s red wines permanently on the world’s wine map.
The 2013 Artemis from SLWC boasts a damp, mossy nose of lush dark fruits, with the strength of potent alcohol hiding in the background, but on the palate one experiences an outburst of flavors ranging widely from bright red fruits to vanilla, and leather to dark black currants. Hints of subtle black tea or bitter fruits linger in the finish. The layering of flavors offers great complexity, while the tannins, fruit and acids are in near perfect balance on this arguably very young wine. My suspicion would be that if you age this bottle for too long, the tannins will be nearly overpowering after the fruit begins to fade, but it drinks beautifully now, and I imagine that will be true for the foreseeable future. Medium-length dry finish.
Very approachable, this is a truly enjoyable Napa Cab at a reasonable QPR. 91 points on my scale, and recommended.