The 2000 GAN EDEN Cabernet Sauvignon was produced from grapes grown from several vineyards in the state of California, but predominantly from Gold Hill Vineyards in Placerville, El Dorado County (barely more than a stone's throw from Sutter's Mill, where gold was first discovered in the mid 1800s) and Rodney Schatz's vineyard in Lodi. The Sierra Foothills is an up-and-coming grape region, growing some fabulous grapes these days. And in Lodi, Rodney and a few other Lodi growers do a superb job of growing connoisseur-quality fruit in an area known for it's "fighting varietal" wines. Needless to say, their fruit is priced higher than most of the fruit in the Lodi area, and in our opinion, is well worth the price difference.
This is 100% varietal, as is our normal practice with Cabernet Sauvignon. Rather than blending in Merlot or other low-tannin grapes in order to make a fruitier, early drinking wine, we prefer to age the wines until they are properly drinkable with good flavor development, then give them to the market with the ability to improve further with age. Although this particular wine exhibits more early drinkability than the majority of Cabs we have produced, it still retains the ability to age and improve for several years-- but not as long as our Limited Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon. It is, however, a departure for us, to be producing this more "commercial" style of wine. However, the market demands something of this nature. As with all of our wines, it is certainly a cut above the competition in terms of quality, and somewhat more distinctive than the pack.
Our 2000 Cabernet Sauvignon is balanced towards fruit, rather than oak. I have tasted lines of wine from other wineries which were very heavy-handed in their use of oak. I have tasted a Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Syrah which were virtually indistinguishable from each other, due to their oak character completely masking their fruit. Needless to say, I want my wines to taste of the varietals from which they are made. Having said that, we used a fair amount of new French and new American oak in this wine, mainly at the medium toast level.
Our Cabernet Sauvignons have each won a bunch of medals, and we have quite a history behind us in crafting distinctive wines for long aging. It is our belief that this wine, created for only moderate aging, will be quite successful in competition as well. It was just bottled in late February of last year, and is now highly accessible. It won 6 medals in 2003, including Silvers in the West Coast Wine Competition and the International Eastern Wine Competition, and 6 medals so far in 2004.
This is a medium ruby, elegant wine with rich aromas and flavors reminiscent of wild cherry, and currant, with subtle oak nuancces and overlaid by light, but noticeable, tannins. Our 2000 Cabernet Sauvignon is an excellent accompaniment to all types of red meats and fowl. I especially enjoy it with a juicy, rare steak.
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