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Review: 2009 Buccella Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley

Buccella is a small-production, luxury wine label founded by Bill and Alicia Deem in 2002. They offer two Cabernet Sauvignon varietal wines and one Merlot, all from vineyards in Napa Valley. “Buccella” is Latin for “mouthful,” which reflects the style of wines the Deem’s say they strive for: “big, bold, concentrated.”

Buccella’s first winemaker was Mark Herold. Assistant winemaker Chris Justin took over in 2007, followed by Celia Welch in 2008. She continues there along with winemaker Rebekah Wineburg who joined in 2009.

The '09 Cabernet is dark purple in my glass. The nose is outgoing, but focused, with a core of blackberry and black cherry fruit accented by oak and mocha. It’s nearly full-bodied in the mouth with medium-plus tannins of light chalk and fine powder. Flavors include black cherry, chocolate, blackberry and spice.

The 2009 Buccella Cabernet Sauvignon is a powerful wine, ripe but not overly so. At first sip, and second and third, it’s very primary and the tannins are prominent. But those tannins moderate sensuously when I sip the wine after a bite of steak. After two hours in a decanter, the forward fruit recedes and savory notes of meat and spice dominate with a background of mocha. Big, bold, concentrated. Drink now through 2020+. Highly Recommended+.

09 Buccella Cab

2009 Buccella Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley

Rating: Highly Recommended+

Drink: now through 2020+
Closure: Cork
Production: 1,238 cases
Retail Price: $145.00

Winemakers: Rebekah Wineburg and Celia Welch
Blend: 94% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3% Petit Verdot, 2% Malbec, 1% Cabernet Franc

Origin: Rutherford, Oakville, Stag’s Leap, Yountville and Coombsville AVAs
Fermentation: Whole berry fermentation
Aging: 22 months in French oak, 100% new
Alcohol: 14.7%

Service Recommendations

Decanting: Optional

Temperature: 60º - 64º F

Food Pairings: steak, braised short ribs or lamb shanks

Interpreting my wine ratings


Disclosures: The FTC has tightened its guidelines with respect to online ads, reviews, blogs, etc. in response to people who are passing paid ads off as personal recommendations or who accept samples of expensive hard goods in exchange for reviews. My lengthy disclosure here is meant to address those guidelines.

The review above reflects my personal experience with the product. It is not a paid ad, nor do I accept ads or compensation for reviews from wine producers. Reviews may cover products that I have purchased, received as samples, or tried under other circumstances I consider to be good tasting conditions. Receiving a product as a sample does not obligate me to review it positively (or at all) and I do not consider samples to be compensation or “free wine.” I have purchased plenty of wine over the years and have more of that than I can drink. Samples are opened for review purposes, not added to my personal cellar or taken to restaurants.

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This article is original to Copyright 2013 NorCal Wine. All rights reserved.