The bar was set quite high in 2020 as we tasted many outstanding wines.
From 2015 Tuscan reds, to 2016 Bordeaux, to 2018 Burgundies, the field was rich with a wide variety of wines for all levels of wine enthusiasts.
If you are a California Cabernet fan, a Bordeaux fan, or just a fan of awesome reds, then the 2016 Rudd Oakville Estate Proprietary Red will knock your socks off!
Rudd's "Oakville Estate" drinks more like a Bordeaux than a California Cabernet.
Mocha, spice, menthol, plum, black cherry and gravel infuse this mid-weight, super-expressive, vibrant Oakville wine. Dollops of Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot add aromatic intensity as the wine finds a more floral and red-toned aromatic upper register with time in the glass." Antonio Galloni
What struck us most about this majestic claret was the wine's signature also identified by the Wine Advocate: "garrigue, tilled soil and cedar chest plus hints of tobacco and dried Provence herbs."
We've enjoyed many Bordeaux - at higher price points we might add - that do not command as much nuance, depth, and balance. In fact, this red is more Bordeaux-like than many Bordeaux being made today.
"In the heart of the Napa Valley, Oakville is the go-to address for California Cabernet Sauvignon, where the top producers of luxury wines tend their vines. It’s home to giants like Harlan Estate, Far Niente, Dalla Valle, Robert Mondavi, Opus One, Groth, Rudd, PlumpJack Winery and Screaming Eagle, to name a mighty few." Wine Enthusiast
Add a great California vintage for Cabernet based wines, and it is no wonder the 2016 Rudd stood out head and shoulders above so many of the exceptional wines we tasted in 2020.
Decant for an hour if you'd like to enjoy it now (which you should) and cellar for up to another 25 years.
Wishing everyone a happy, healthy, and prosperous 2021!
The EWM Team