The grapes are hand harvested, destemmed and immediately crushed, and each vineyard lot is fermented separately with selected yeasts in temperature-controlled stainless steel tanks over a period of six to seven days. Each lot of grapes is frequently tasted during fermentation to determine when the extraction is at optimum. At that point, the wine is pressed off the skins in membrane wine presses, keeping the press wine separate from the free-run wine. In this way, Cakebread Cellars' red wines, especially the Cabernets, have their natural fruitiness preserved, while the extraction of harsh, drying tannins is avoided. It is then pressed and returned to stainless steel for complete malolactic fermentation. Following this, the wine is racked into French oak barrels, of which roughly half are new and half of one and two years' use for approximately six months.
Throughout the initial aging process, the various individual lots are continually taste-analyzed to determine the final blend. Depending on the vintage, the finished blend will include up to twenty five percent combined Merlot and Cabernet Franc, with Merlot contributing the greater percentage. Once the final blend is assembled, it is returned to the same French oak barrels to age for an additional 12 to 18 months before being bottled. The only treatments preceding bottling are an egg-white fining and a single passage through a rough filter.
Wine & Spirits(From 2006 Vintage) The 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon is among the finest "regular" Cabernet Sauvignons I have tasted from Cakebread. It exhibits a dense ruby/purple color, stunning purity, subtle notes of smoke, black currants, blackberries, spring flowers and toast, good acidity and ripe tannins. This full-bodied yet graceful, deep, silky Cabernet Sauvignon is already irresistible, but it will provide provocative and complex drinking for 15-20 years. This benchmark winery has again turned out some impressive wines.
Wine & Spirits(From 2004 Vintage) Rating: 90/100 - As reviewed by Wine & Spirits Magazine on 12/07
Wine Spectator(From 2004 Vintage) Rating: 91/100 - As reviewed by Wine Spectator on 11/06
Decanter(From 1997 Vintage) Rating: 5/5 - As reviewed by Decanter. Powerful, smoky, coffee aromas. Opulent, ripe, spicy rich fruit. Amazing intensity with lovely complexity and great length. Delicious.
Decanter(From 2002 Vintage) Rating: 4/5 - As reviewed by Decanter. Excellent depth of fruit, sweet hazelnut, raspberry. Very well balanced, tight, good acidity, very elegant, strong oak. Drink 2008-16.