Freemark Abbey "Sycamore" Cabernet Sauvignon 2018 (Napa Valley, California) - [WA 95+] [VM 95] [DM 95] JS 94] [WS 92] [WE 92]

Freemark Abbey "Sycamore" Cabernet Sauvignon 2018
(Napa Valley, California) - [WA 95+] [VM 95] [DM 95] JS 94] [WS 92] [WE 92]


Regular price $200.00 Sale price $179.97 Save $20.03
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WA95+ VM95 DM95 WS92 WE92
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About the Winery:
The history of Freemark Abbey began in 1886, when Josephine Marlin Tychson became the first woman to build and operate a winery in California. The historic site where Josephine's winery, Tychson Cellars, once stood is now known as Freemark Abbey.

In the years that followed, Freemark Abbey went through a period of several different owners until 1966, when a group of partners purchased the winery. In only their second vintage, their Cabernet was selected to compete in The Judgement at Paris!

For four decades, until 2020, Ted Edwards was the winemaker, and while he is still on staff as winemaker emeritus and participates in various blending trials, day-to-day winemaking is now helmed by Kristy Melton, the winery's second woman winemaker. Since 2006, Freemark Abbey has been part of the Jackson Family Wines (JFW) portfolio.

About this Wine: 
Located on the southern end of the Rutherford Bench, the small 24-acre (located about 1.2 miles south of Bosché) Sycamore Vineyard’s proximity to the Mayacamas Mountains provides the perfect climate for growing a rich, textured Cabernet. The wine is intense in aromatic complexity, reminiscent of blackberry, pomegranate syrup, black tea, and forest floor. The palate is rich and textured with flavors of forest fruits, dark chocolate, bay leaf, and warm oak spices. The ‘Rutherford dust’ is evident in the tannin structure, giving it textures that are bold but integrated, making it lovely to drink now with the capability to age in the cellar for decades.

Notes from the Winemaker:
The wine is deep garnet in color with aromas reminiscent of black currant, pomegranate, baking spice, forest floor and espresso. The palate is rich and textured with flavors of black cherry, dark chocolate, leather, and warm oak spices. The site gives the wine great tannin structure that is bold but integrated, making it lovely to drink now with the capability to age in the cellar for decades.

Grape Variety: 77% Cabernet Sauvignon 9% Merlot 8% Cabernet Franc 6% Petit Verdot

Aging: 27 months in French oak, 62% new

Alcohol: 14.4% abv

Ratings & Reviews:

95+ Points - Wine Advocate:
"The 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Sycamore Vineyards comes from a site (across from Staglin on Bella Oaks) that is still owned by one of the winery's original partners. Delicate California garrigue notes of mountain scrub and bay leaf frame dark cassis fruit, joined by vibrant raspberries as well. Matured in 65% new French oak, this full-bodied, complex and sturdy blend of 77% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc and 6% Petit Verdot finishes dusty and tannic, yet it also has a juicy and mouthwatering finish, with hints of dark chocolate and espresso. In contrast to Bosché, this vineyard is more gravelly, producing smaller berries with more tannin. It receives more afternoon shade, so it's picked approximately two weeks later as well." – Joe Czerwinski (May 2022)

95 Points - Vinous Media:
“The 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Sycamore Vineyard is rich and expansive from start to finish. Succulent red cherry, plum, mocha, espresso, licorice and dried herbs flesh out in an ample, large-scaled Cabernet loaded with class and personality. There’s a lot of wine here.” – Antonio Galloni (Jan 2022)

95 Points - Decanter Magazine:
"This vintage, 77% Cabernet Sauvignon is supported by Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Petit Verdot to soften and lend extra layers of rich fruit. Intense blueberry and violet aromas are joined by savoury wild herb notes, surely contributed by the surrounding madrone and bay laurels in the vineyard. There is plenty of black and blue fruit, rich loamy earth tones and powerful, sculpted tannins framed by firm acidity. Finishes long and minerally. Calls for short rib or seasoned, grilled ribeye, nicely salted." (May 2022)

94 Points -James Suckling:
"Gorgeous aromas of blackberries and fresh herbs, such as lavender and sage. Bay leaf, too. Full-bodied with round, juicy tannins and a creamy and dusty finish. Hints of dried bay leaf and a dusty-wood undertone. Very drinkable now, but a year or two will improve it." (Mar 2022)

92 Points - Wine Spectator:
"This is reserved in style but has a nice well of loganberry and mulberry fruit, with subtle apple wood, loam and licorice root notes. A flash of sweet bay leaf flickers in the background, too. Polished feel overall. Drink now through 2032. 2,400 cases made." – JM (Nov 2022)

92 Points - Wine Enthusiast:
"Blended with 9% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc and 6% Petit Verdot, this wine offers firm structure and strong tannins. With more than two years in French oak, it unfurls into waves of earthy dried herb, cedar and peppercorn, with a chalky texture of crushed rock." – Virginia Boone (Nov 2022)