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2009 Hawk and Horse Cabernet Sauvignon

The Hawk and Horse wines come from a sloping, 18-acre estate vineyard that reaches up to 2,200 feet in Lake County's Red Hills AVA. The deep red, volcanic soil is peppered with silicon-based crystals known as "Lake County Diamonds" or "moon tears" The vineyard is certified organic and biodynamic. It's part of a much larger ranch that's also home to adorably shaggy Scottish Highland Cattle.

The Red Hills Lake County AVA was established in 2004. It's warm, sunny days lead to good ripeness in Bordeaux and Rhone varieties. The high altitude, breezes and cool nights maintain reasonable acidity levels and keep sugars from getting too high. In addition to the handful of locally based wineries, several large companies own extensive vineyards in Red Hills, including Beckstoffer, Beringer and Kendall-Jackson.

2009-hawk and horse cab bottleFresh out of the bottle, the 2009 Hawk and Horse Cabernet Sauvignon is tight and firm with light-grained tannins. Extensive decanting allows the wine to blossom. Powerful aromas of tart black cherry, briary blackberry, dark spice and sweet oak emerge from the deep ruby wine. With decanting, body moves from medium+ to full and the tannins get pleasingly thick but softer. Flavors included salty mineral, black fruit, oak and moist cedar forest. For early consumption, decanting is essential. I was happiest after 18 hours. Drink now through 2025. Highly Recommended+

2009 Hawk and Horse Cabernet Sauvignon, Red Hills Lake County AVA
Rating: Highly Recommended+

Drink: now through 2025
Closure: Cork
Production: 1350 cases
Retail Price: $65.00

Winemakers: Richard Peterson and Tracey Hawkins
Origin: Hawk & Horse Estate vineyard, Red Hills Lake County AVA
Aging: 23 months in French oak, 100% new
Alcohol: 14.8%

Service Recommendations

Decanting: 3 to 24 hours

Temperature: 60º - 64º F

Food Pairing: Well-marbled steak

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 NorCalWine.com. Copyright 2014 NorCal Wine. All rights reserved.