ITEM 52804

2008 Kapcsandy Family Winery Estate Cuvee Napa Valley State Lane Vineyard


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Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: 97 points

The 2008 Estate Cuvee State Lane Vineyard (68% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Merlot and the rest Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot) is spectacular. In fact, I rated it the same as I did the 2007. A dense ruby/purple hue is followed by a gorgeous bouquet of espresso roast, chocolate, blackberries and black fruits. Full-bodied with extraordinary elegance as well as tremendous texture, intensity and length, this singular wine should drink well for two decades. For those who complain that California wines are too alcoholic, every one of the Kapcsandy wines is under 14.6% alcohol. As I have written many times over the last several years, the Kapcsandy estate, which is essentially the old Beringer State Lane Vineyard in Yountville resurrected under the perfectionist philosophy of Lou Kapcsandy, his son, Louis, and wife, Bobbi, is about as good a news story as one can find in Napa Valley. The vineyard, planted with very tight spacing and a north/south exposition by Helen Turley and John Wetlaufer, is impressive in its own right. Yet what the Kapcsandys have done with the fruit from that vineyard with assistance from their consultant, the Pauillac-born Denis Malbec, is nothing short of remarkable. Moreover, they have done it in less than a decade, which proves that fortunes can be made quickly, provided there are three ingredients incredibly hard work, lots of talent, and a super terroir. These can indeed propel an estate to the stratosphere in less than a decade. The basic second wine of lots culled out from their three top cuvees is called Endre. This is a very good effort as the two most recent vintages suggest. There are three cuvees made from Kapcsandys State Lane Vineyard. The Estate Cuvee is generally composed of equal proportions of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot blended with tiny amounts of Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. The Robertas Reserve, which is named after Lou Kapcsandys wife, Bobbi, is their Pomerol-styled Merlot-based wine that usually contains at least 90% Merlot and the rest Cabernet Franc. The Cabernet Sauvignon Grand Vin State Lane Vineyard is a northern Medoc-styled offering usually containing 85% or more Cabernet Sauvignon blended with tiny portions of Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. This estate has duplicated their extraordinary success with the 2007s with very great 2008s. The 2009s from the Kapcsandys 15.5-acre State Lane Vineyard are the result of a slightly cooler, larger yielding year.For readers on the mailing list and visitors to the winery, there are several other wines produced. The estate makes a very delicious, dry, deep colored rose from Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, and the 2009 Rose is another noteworthy example. It possesses much more flavor and body than most roses. Kapcsandy also produces a port-styled wine called Vino del Sol. Slightly lower in alcohol than most ports (17.6-18.1%), to date they have made a 2007, 2008 and 2009. Theyre good efforts, but hardly at the exhilarating level of quality of their dry estate wines made from Bordeaux varietals.Tel. (707) 948-3100; Fax (707) 948-3106

Review Date: December 2010