Silver Oak Cabernet Sauvignon 1997 Alexander Valley 92-94RP

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The 1997 Cabernet Sauvignon Alexander Valley displays an impressive saturated purple color (keep in mind it is the most youthful), followed by admirable levels of over-ripe black currant and blackberry fruit intermixed with Asian spices, cedar, and toasty oak. Deep and full-bodied, with low acidity, and an evolved personality, this may be the most sumptuous and expressive of the three offerings (19995,1996 and 1997). It should drink well during its first 12-15 years of life.

Silver Oak wines are supple, explosively fruity, and deliver copious quantities of glycerin, extract, and richness wrapped in generous quantities of American oak. Critics have argued that the wine does not age particularly well, but that has largely been proven a myth. I doubt it will last as long as Chateau Montelena, Dunn, or other Napa Cabernets with a 30-40 year aging potential, but these wines have a broad window of drinkability, being delicious at release, and able to sustain their fruit and character for 15 or more years.-RP