94 Point Cabernet $36.95 – Stonestreet Monument Ridge 2007
To quote French Stewart of Saturday Night Live’s “Celebrity Jeopardy”, “I’m a late bloomer, Alex, and in Double Jeopardy, I’m gonna bloom!” It’s Double Jeopardy for the 2007 vintage but Sonoma County is still releasing some of that amazing vintage and the 2007 Stonestreet Monument Ridge Cabernet is, well, monumental.
This winery is another one of the late Jess Jackson’s masterpieces. He was a pioneer of California wine, but also wine values, especially with the Kendall-Jackson label. This winery has released a true value with this Alexander Valley Cabernet. Alexander Valley is one of the few places in Sonoma County that grows great Cabernet grapes because of it’s warmer temperatures. I hesitate to bring this up, but another famous Cabernet hails from the Alexander Valley appellation. Silver something…
The expressive, bright, floral nose is indicative of the 400-2400 ft altitude at which these grapes were grown. On the palate, this wine is Sahara Desert dry with incredible focus, bright acids and serious tannins. As it finishes the tannins turn sweet to make what might be an otherwise astringent wine absolutely stunning.
I can only imagine how great this wine will taste with five, 10 or 15 years. This is an ager!
Robert Parker gives this one 94 points and the somewhat less reliable Wine Enthusiast gives it 96. Here’s the plan: buy four bottles and drink one now, one in five years, 10 and 15. I would bet that 15 years from now, you will be wishing you bought a whole case. But isn’t that what wine’s all about?
Robert Parker 94 Points
“The biggest production cuvee, the inky/purple-tinged 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon Monument Ridge is fabulous. Composed of 92% Cabernet Sauvignon and 8% Cabernet Franc aged 16 months in 76% new French oak casks, it reveals abundant aromas of creme de cassis, graphite, ink, licorice, and fruitcake in a full-bodied, Pauillac-like style with plenty of sweet tannin.
These are far and away the most impressive group of Stonestreet Alexander Mountain estate wines I have ever tasted. Kudos to proprietor Jess Jackson and winemakers Graham Weerts and Marcia Monahan for exploiting this high elevation terroir. This has been a work-in-progress for Jackson, and he has finally hit paydirt with the following wines. Readers need to pay close attention as there are some amazing Chardonnays as well as red wines emerging from Stonestreet. There are seven distinctive cuvees of Chardonnay, ranging in production from 185 cases of Red Point, to 660 cases of Lower Rim. All of these super-impressive efforts come from elevations of 900 to 1,800 feet. I tasted one Merlot and seven Cabernet Sauvignons, and as readers can tell, these are also impressive wines. Production ranges from approximately 250 cases of the single vineyard Cabernet Sauvignons (the only exception being the 5,000-case cuvee of Cabernet Sauvignon Monument Ridge).”
Wine Enthusiast 96 Points
“A dramatic wine, authoritative in tannins, bone dry and noble. Withholds its best under a cloak of astringency, but already shows its mountain terroir in the complexity of its structure and deep, intense blackberry, currant, blueberry and dried herb flavors. Should develop bottle complexities for at least a decade and probably longer.”