Blackbird "Contrarian" Cabernet Sauvignon 2016
(Napa Valley, California) - [W&S 94] [WA 93+] [VM 93] [JS 93] [JD 93]
Regular price $155.00 Sale price $128.97 Save $26.03
Contrarian is crafted by passion and instinct. This textured blend of Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon possesses both an aromatic richness and subtle tannin profile. It exudes an elegance Blackbird Vineyards' wines are known for, while displaying the regal posture that comes from superior Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. A wine to indulge in now and for decades to come, Contrarian's uniquely supple structure flouts convention.
"Bold and expressive with aromas of black cherry, fresh cracked pepper, and bay leaves, Contrarian is sure to impress. Notes of black currant, blackberry, salted caramel, and sweet herbs are complimented by intrepid tannins that carry through to a long, lingering finish. This wine is stunning now and will continue to develop with time in the cellar." - Winemaker, Aaron Pott
Technical Data:Blend: 81% Cabernet Sauvignon, 13% Merlot, 6% Cabernet Franc
Harvest: Fall 2014
Release: Spring 2017
Barrel Regime: 21 months in French Oak barrels - 75% new, 25% seasoned
Production: 40 barrels
Optimum Drinking: 2017 - 2030
Ratings & Reviews
94 Points - Wine & Spirits:
"Though Blackbird’s original wine was a merlotfocused blend, current winemaker Aaron Pott takes Contrarian in a savory, less voluptuous direction. The wine is grounded by cabernet sauvignon, with a contribution from Ballard Vineyard on Spring Mountain that lends it stature and breed, as well as mineral-inflected tannins that carry the smokiness of rock striking rock. The wine’s blackberry juiciness and black-olive savor gain depth and detail with air, the flavors glimmering like cool water in a well. It has an old-fashioned sense of Napa Valley, before the wines got fancy. Decant it for Mediterranean lamb."
93+ Points - Robert Parker's Wine Advocate:
"Blended of 64% Cabernet Sauvignon, 29% Cabernet Franc and 7% Merlot, the deep garnet-purple colored 2016 Contrarian Proprietary Red reveals notes of crushed black and red currants, black cherries and red plums with touches of red roses, black tea, tilled soil and tobacco. Medium-bodied, the palate delivers intense red and black fruit layers with plenty of earthy sparks and a grainy frame, finishing long and refreshing. 1,580 cases were made." - Lisa Perrotti-Brown (Oct 2018)
93 Points - Antonio Galloni's Vinous:
"The 2016 Contrarian is a bold, powerful wine. Beams of Cabernet tannin give the 2016 its shape and overall feel. Sage, lavender, menthol, licorice, spice and leather add shades of nuance. Potent and also structured, the 2016 needs time in bottle to shed some of its tannin. Contrarian is Blackbird's Cabernet Sauvignon-based wine." - Antonio Galloni (Dec 2018)
93 Points - James Suckling:
"A juicy and rich red with lots of fruit and polished yet fine tannins. Medium to full body and tight, focused fruit. Delicious now. Why wait? A blend of 64 per cent cabernet sauvignon, 29 per cent cabernet franc and seven per cent merlot." - (Oct 2018)
93 Points - Jeb Dunnuck:
Starting with the 2016 Contrarian Proprietary Red Wine, this deep purple-colored effort checks in as 64% Cabernet Sauvignon, 29% Cabernet Franc, and the balance Merlot. It offers plenty of classic Napa Cabernet Sauvignon flair in its blue fruits, graphite, licorice, and mineral-laced aromas and flavors. On the palate, it's medium to full-bodied, has a straight, focused style, terrific purity, and building tannins. It's going to require 4-6 years of bottle age and will drink nicely for 15+ years or more.