Corison Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley 1992
Corison Winery Trade Page photo by Jeff Davila 2005 Corison Cabernet Sauvignon The 2005 Corison Cabernet is classic and refined with great bones. September that year was unseasonably chilly and harvest was a full month later than normal. Time on the vine allowed the development of the full range of flavors that Cabernet can achieve (red and blue fruits grading into the darker, purple and black notes) at moderate alcohol. Cold nights promoted great natural acidity. Inviting aromas jump out of the glass. Cherry pie, complete with allspice, nutmeg and cardamom, dominates the aromas and flavors with hints of plum, cassis, lavender and dark chocolate chiming in. The overall impression is warm and engaging. - Cathy Corison "Make no mistake, California 2005 Cabs are juicy, full-flavoured and potent, yet many of them show restraint and secondary cedar, earth, herb and mineral notes..." -Linda Murphy Decanter Magazine, September 2008 "The personality of the 2005 vintage is shaping up: intensity and structure, along with great purity and depth of fruit. The best of the 2005s have intense color and concentration and excellent structure with good acidity and lower alcohols." -James Laube, Wine Spectator 2004 Corison Cabernet Sauvignon The 2004 growing season started very early in the Spring and included a cool, steady ripening period in the Fall. It ended with a very early harvest of extremely low yields resulting in exceptional concentration of the fruit. Pandemonium reigned for a brief time as Rose and Grace returned to school as the first grapes were picked. This lovely wine is dark crimson in color with enticing aromas of dusty plums, wild cherries and candied violets. Its flavors are rich with red currants and cherries, hints of cassis, cocoa and nutmeg. Soft, supple tannins and a luscious mouth-feel complement its firm structure and moderate alcohol. With both power and elegance, it promises many years of enjoyment. 95 Points THREE STARS:(95-98 points) An exceptional wine. Worth a special search of the market. "Proportion and admirable varietal precision are the watchwords of this beautifully made wine, and it reminds that great Cabernet is born from balance and depth more than unbridled ripeness. Lightly dusty with deft touches of briar and loam comfortably tied to its classic, ripe-currant fruit, the wine has plenty of mass but is always light on its feet with integral tannins doing their part in providing structural spine. Wines of this crafting usually tempt early drinking, and, though we would not complain at a glass in a few years, we have no reservations about cellaring this one for a decade or more." -Connoisseurs' Guide to California Wine, April 2008 San Francisco Chronicle Cathy Corison has been making wine for 30 years, releasing the first vintage of her eponymous wine 20 years ago. This wine's nose shows black cherry, cola and baking spice amid toast and sweet vanilla. There's mineral, red fruit and grippy black flavors on the palate. Time will soften the firm structure of this nuanced wine. 3 stars Friday, November 2, 2007 2004 Steven Tanzer's International Wine Cellar Bright medium ruby. Aromas of cassis, blackberry, dark chocolate, licorice and minerals. Rich, chewy and deep; quite fat and full with a chocolatey sweetness. Finishes with lovely ripe, building tannins. 91. May/June 2007 Issue 132 Wine & Spirits Cathy Corison blends this wine from the benchland vineyards that neighbor her Kronos estate vineyard in St. Helena. The substantial black fruit has fig like flavors, while what's beautiful about the wine is the tannin - dark and mineral in flavor, satin in texture, all at peace with the fruit. The wine brightens with air, a sleek red with juicy richness of finely grown benchland cabernet. - 93 Rating -Joshua Greene, Wine & Spirits, December 2007 Quarterly Review of Wines Superb wine, rounded and intense with characteristic bright fruit wrapped around a firm tannic center. The finish lingers, with layers of spice and fruit. -Larry Walker, QRW Fall 2007 Jancis Robinson "Corison Cabernet Sauvignon 2004 Napa Valley 18.5 Drink 2008-15 "...whereas Cathy Corison has barely to whisper. Very dark crimson. Then lovely spreading gorgeousness with fine tannins and apparent Cabernet Franc refreshment effect on the palate yet mellow, fully ripe HAPPY fruit. Great balance. This is not desperately intense or hot or massive or tannic, it's just so gentle and harmonious. A fine riposte to high alcohol Cabs. 13.6% 8 August 2008" August 8, 2008 Restaurant Wine - Four Stars Beautifully balanced, full bodied, supple, and long on the palate, with a firm, lightly oaky finish. The wine has black currant, toast, cherry, and blueberry aromas/flavors. - July/August, 2007 The Washington Post The 2004 Corison Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon ...impressed us with its black-cherry flavors plus hints of cocoa. (Note to fans of the "Saturday Night Live" "Lazy Sunday" video: "Corison + beef = crazy delicious.") Top 40 wines 2008 - Sunset Magazine Jancis Robinson …whereas Cathy Corison has barely to whisper. Very dark crimson. Then lovely spreading gorgeousness with fine tannins and apparent Cabernet Franc refreshment effect on the palate yet mellow, fully ripe HAPPY fruit. Great balance. This is not desperately intense or hot or massive or tannic, it's just so gentle and harmonious. A fine riposte to high alcohol Cabs. - 8 August 2008 2001 Corison Cabernet Sauvignon The 2001 Corison Cabernet is a beauty. The most important factor in a great vintage is the weather during the ripening season, the interval between veraison (softening and the onset of color development) and picking. Warm days and cool nights result in the darkest color, the most complex flavors and the best balance. The spare rainfall during the winter months favored a smaller than average crop, contributing uncommon intensity to the wine. Cool nights yielded a wine with inky color and a firm structure. It is the natural acidity in a wine that gives it the liveliness to be refreshing and the longevity to reward patient cellaring. Fleshing out this sturdy framework are rich, complex flavors and aromas. The red fruit notes include plum, blackberry and black cherry with hints of chocolate and a dash of spice for interest. A beautiful floral perfume of violets and an unmistakable mineral quality, often called “Rutherford dust”, complete the package. In short, all of the components converge in just the right place; everything is in balance. This wine will enjoy a long, distinguished life. 2003 Kronos Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon The 2003 growing season began with a vengeance. There were a few early heat spikes in March followed by the wettest April on record. Luckily, as the season progressed, the weather became increasingly benign. After veraison (the critical time when the vines were busy ripening their crop), there was nary a day over 100°. Deep ruby in color, the 2003 Corison Kronos Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon boasts aromas of wild boysenberries, plums and cassis. Linzer torte and ripe black cherry flavors are complemented by hints of nutmeg, cardamom and vanilla. Soft tannins contribute a round, lush mouth feel and hints of violets charm the lingering finish. - Cathy Corison 93 Points "Richness, elegance, power and grace all come together in this remarkable wine, and, from its first layered scents of currants, cocoa, wildflowers and sandalwood spice, it leaves little doubt that something special is afoot. It is big and expressive but never less than perfectly balanced, and its exceptionally fine and long-lasting flavors show great range and depth. It will be around for years if properly cellared, but the temptations for drinking it in the next few years are considerable." - Connoisseurs' Guide to California Wine, April 2008 "Ruby-red. High-pitched aromas of blueberry, licorice, chocolate, leather and smoky, cedary oak. Then supple and sweet in the mouth. Finishes with firm, dusty tannins and notes of chocolate and leather. 90" - Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar Fortunately, it's no big whoop any longer that women make wine, because so many do. But what's interesting is that if you tasted any of Cathy Corison's wines, and she's been making them for a long time, you would never describe them as feminine. That's because she produces wines that are substantial and reveal their place of origin. But her 2003 edition from her Kronos Vineyard just south of the town of St. Helena, I must say – while still exhibiting those aforementioned characteristics – is feminine. It's soft, lovely and pretty, and lush and rich. Like all her wines, they are symmetrically balanced. The Kronos parcel, planted to clone 7, is 35-plus years old. Vines of this age tend to be non-vigorous, meaning that every ounce of flavor and minerality is coaxed out of the sparsely populated clusters. Corison picked the fruit at an almost old-fashioned 24.2 Brix, which manifested in an almost unheard of alcohol of 13.4 percent; which all goes to prove that a wine can still be gorgeous while the alcohol is held in check. It spent 22 months in French oak, and there were only 400 cases produced" - Alan Goldfarb in AppellationAmerica.com Medium-dark ruby; attractive, forward, rich, intense, spicy, smoky, cassis and black cherry fruit aroma with with hints of mint and tea; full body; tight, herbal, cedary, dark currant and black cherry fruit flavors; well balanced and structured; full tannin; lingering aftertaste. Should continue to develop with another three to five more years of bottle aging. Very highly recommended. - California Grapevine The clear winner of our beef-only tasting, which included rare filet mignon and braised short ribs, was the 2003 Corison Kronos Vineyard Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon from winemaker Cathy Corison. It took a full 40 minutes for this wine to open up and for its black-cherry fruit, pink peppercorn spice and bitter cocoa notes to show at their best. - The Washington Post 2002 Cabernet Sauvignon Kronos Vineyard The 2002 growing season was long and cool with a couple of heat spikes in early October that served to bring grapes home. A shy crop produced complex, concentrated flavors draped over flawless structure. Norm Roby writes in Decanter: "2002 may change the way many international wine lovers think about California Cabernet Sauvignon. The finest and most typical wines avoid that juicy-jammy opulent style that is so obvious but often lets you down in the finish." Plums, spice and floral perfume abound. Managing to be powerful and elegant at the same time, this is a classic vintage for Kronos Vineyard. Only 250 cases were produced. "Medium-dark purplish ruby; attractive, fragrant, spicy, cedary, dark currant and blackberry fruit aroma with hints of black licorice; full body; rich, supple, smoky, concentrated, ripe blackberry fruit flavors with a smooth, velvety mouth feel; full tannin; lingering aftertaste. Approachable and enjoyable to taste now, showing good depth of fruit. Very highly recommended." - California Grapevine December 06 / January 07 Dec 06/Jan 07 "Exceptional - 2002 Corison Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley, Kronos Vineyard ($98): Cedar and spice notes with great herb, tart-cherry aroma and a subtle, classic taste and structure (13.8% alcohol) A great wine." -Dan Berger's Vintage Experiences, November 2006 2001 Cabernet Sauvignon Kronos Vineyard 2001 was a classic vintage, with ideal conditions for making powerful yet elegant wines. There was not a single heat spike over 100 �F during the entire ripening season in 2001. Warm days and cool, foggy nights resulted in inky color and full, complex flavors. The spare rainfall during the winter months favored a smaller than average crop, contributing uncommon intensity to the wine. I love the 2001 Corison Kronos Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon for its amazing layered flavors. Steve Tanzer writes: "Brooding aromas of black raspberry, minerals, violet and bitter chocolate with claret-like notes of leather, smoke, cedar and graphite. Finishes with lovely length and lingering sweetness. 91+ I would add that this juicy wine evokes blackberry pie and jumps out of the glass with lavender and dried-rose-petal perfume. The Kronos signature texture is round with soft, silky tannins. 400 cases were produced. Kronos Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon is our single-vineyard estate wine. These rare vines are more than 30 years old and produce just over one ton per acre each year. "Veteran winemaker Cathy Corison creates this vividly aromatic, cassis-scented Cabernet from low-yielding 30-year-old vines surrounding her winery, off Napa Valley's famed Highway 29 between Rutherford and St. Helena." - Food & Wine - The Buyer's Guide to 75 of the Best California Wines, April 2006 "Aged in 50% new oak; made from a ten-acre parcel of 30-year-old vines next to the Corison winery on Highway 29, at the south end of St. Helena): Good full ruby. Brooding aromas of black raspberry, minerals, violet and bitter chocolate. Sweeter, denser and fatter than the 2003 and 2002 Napa bottlings, with claret-like notes of leather, smoke, cedar and graphite. Here the acids are more obviously integrated, but there's still a bit of tarry oak to be absorbed. Finishes with lovely length and lingering sweetness. The yield, always low in this vineyard, was just 1-1/2 tons per acre. 91(+1)." - Steven Tanzer, May/June 2005 *** (Three Stars - Chronicle Wine Selection) The organically farmed vineyard, planted on gravelly bench soils between Rutherford and St. Helena, is notable for its 30-year-old vines. Elusive flowery aromas, with toasted wood notes that dominate but also lend a distinct freshness. Subtle cherry and blackberry, though it's a bit on the juicy side at its core. Tapered ending. - The San Francisco Chronicle, December 15, 2006 2000 Cabernet Sauvignon Kronos Vineyard Elegant and complex, the 2000 Corison Kronos Vineyard Cabernet is lovely. The mild, even summer weather allowed slow, steady ripening, promoting mature, juicy flavors at relatively low sugars. Extensive crop thinning at veraison provided even ripening. The grapes hung on the vines for fully two weeks longer than in a typical season! Small clusters and tiny berries yielded a wine with inky color and classic structure. Miserly at just over one ton per acre, the Kronos Vineyard proved itself in 2000; great vineyards make great wine. Mouthwatering, multilayered aromas include plums and black cherries. Spice and vanilla from the French oak barrels combine with boysenberry jam flavors to give us the whole pie! Complexing notes include cedar, mocha, whiffs of peppermint and hints of green olives. The tannins are soft and mouth-coating and the palate is broad but firm, with a long finish. 2005 Corazón Gewürztraminer Anderson Valley Each year I produce a small lot of Gewürztraminer from a 31-year-old vineyard in the Anderson Valley, which is clearly the best area in California for the variety. Inspired by Alsatian wines, the Corazon is fermented to dryness. Made this way, Gewürztraminer cries out for food. Complex aromas include pear, honeysuckle, honeycomb, wildflowers, lychee, grapefruit zest and chamomile. The flavors are rich with citron and vanilla flavors and subtle spice notes. Creamy and full in the mouth, it has a long crisp finish. Corazón is derived from the ancestral form of my family name and means "heart" in Spanish. An Alsatian style Gewurz' which opens with mineral, pear, apple, grapefruit peel, and spice on the nose. Flavors of pear, apple, grapefruit, and mineral finish medium-broad and medium-long and the spice reappear on the finish. Well balanced, structured, and integrated. Very Tasty. Colorado Wine News, July 2008 2003 Corison Cabernet Sauvignon Picking the delicious 2003 Corison Cabernet Sauvignon was a challenge, but luckily I had my last picking scheduled just as the long, wicked late September heat spike hit. The fruit got to the winery in excellent shape and without the sugars going through the roof. The otherwise even ripening season from veraison through the middle of September delivered complex flavors and inky color. The resulting wine is packed with luscious Bing cherry and plum chutney fruit and rendered rich and complex with undertones of cocoa, nutmeg, white pepper and "Rutherford dust". Trademark floral highnotes are already beginning to develop in the bottle. Lush with gentle, mouth-coating tannins, it gracefully walks the line between power and elegance, perfectly balanced for a long, distinguished life. *** (three stars - Chronicle Wine Selection) Cathy Corison picked her fruit just as a September heat wave began, and the 13.6 percent alcohol shows ripeness without heat, typical of Corison's moderate approach. A distinct wood presence, though buoyant fruit shines through, with red cherry highlights and balanced tannins. - The San Francisco Chronicle, December 15, 2006 2002 Corison Cabernet Sauvignon Reminiscent of 1994, the 2002 growing season was long and cool with a couple of heat spikes in early October that served to bring grapes home. Small crops produced complex, concentrated flavors draped over flawless structure. Norm Roby writes in Decanter: "2002 may change the way many international wine lovers think about California Cabernet Sauvignon. The finest and most typical wines avoid that juicy-jammy opulent style that is so obvious but often lets you down in the finish." Brimming with plum and blackberry fruit with hints of cocoa, the 2002 is expansive and deep, while at the same time, supple and balanced with a long, satisfying finish. Steve Tanzer writes: "Dark ruby-red. High-pitched aromas of cassis, violet and bitter chocolate. Juicy flavors of dark berries and baking spices, with a firm edge of acidity giving the wine shape and grip and a floral element contributing to the wine's inner-mouth aromatic character. 91+" 2000 Corison Cabernet Sauvignon Delicious and approachable already. Supple and harmonious, with a sense of understatement. Spicy currant, black cherry and plummy notes, that are well-balanced and rich. Fine-grained tannins make it easy to enjoy now. Drink now through 2010. (tasting note summer 2004) 90 Points. Supple and harmonious, it wins points for its sense of understatement, with spicy currant, black cherry and plum notes that are well-balanced and rich without being too powerful. Fine-grained tannins make it easy to enjoy now. The Wine Spectator 10/31/03 1999 Corison Cabernet Sauvignon Dark, rich. Young, firm structure. Still tight. Ripe, full flavors in the red to black range. Generous aromas. Built to last with good acidity. Hold for 2-4 years. (tasting note summer 2004) To celebrate the beginning of construction of our winery building, every magnum was etched with a likeness of the central cupola on the barn. 1998 Corison Cabernet Sauvignon Warm, lovely, subtle and elegant. Very developed and resolved with floral bouquet. Approachable. Ripe black cherries and plums. Black olives, earth, mint, cedar and spice notes. Drink now and over the next 10 years. (tasting note summer 2004) Medium-weight, with herb, dill, cedar and earthy cherry and plum flavors that are elegant and well-proportioned. Turns complex on the finish. The Wine Spectator 10/31/01 1997 Corison Cabernet Sauvignon Dark, brooding, complex. Purple edges in the glass. From a great vintage. Plums, blueberry, black cherry fruit. Dried flowers. Smoky, integrated oak. Softly tannic. Round feel. Hold for 2-3 years. Classic, with long life. (tasting note summer 2004) In honor of our daughter, Grace, born in 1997, we etched every magnum with the Three Graces. "Lovely mixed berries - black, red and blue-cedar shadings, and vanilla mark this elegant, finely crafted wine." - Wine Enthusiast 11/1/00 1996 Corison Cabernet Sauvignon Dark, deep garnet color. Ripe plum and cassis, dark chocolate and coffee. Firm structure. Very young. Rather tight, waiting to open up. Hold for 2-3 years. Will have a long life. (tasting note summer 2004) Smells very fine and pure. Classy black currants and toasty oak rule. Flavors are opulent, rich and ripe, but very balanced. Gorgeous tannins; soft and accessible. It defines style and grace. - The Wine Enthusiast 2000 1995 Corison Cabernet Sauvignon Blossoming all this year. May have supplanted the 1991 as my favorite, at the moment. Just entering that magical stage where abundant bottle bouquet has developed and there is still plenty of red and blue fruit to enjoy. The extremely complex fruit profile includes blueberries, black cherries, blackberry jam, plums and cassis. It also boasts hints of chocolate, olive and anise. Violet perfume in the aromas complements spice, cedar and fruit. The feel is mouth-filling and the finish is long and rich. Elegant and pretty but powerful at the same time. (tasting note summer 2004) 1994 Corison Cabernet Sauvignon Bright, dark ruby. From a great vintage, still youthful and just beginning to let us in. Exuberant bouquet. Big and jammy mouthful of complex red fruit flavors with floral notes. Earthy flint and gravel notes. Softly tannic, round, full. Tasty now, will continue to bloom for many years. (tasting note summer 2004) In honor of our daughter, Rose, born in 1994, we etched every magnum with a rose. 1993 Corison Cabernet Sauvignon Ruby color with garnet edges. Ripe black cherry. Delicate and elegant. Soft and round with nice mineral notes. Anise and olives for interest. Resolving nicely; drink now through 2008. (tasting note summer 2004) "This beautifully made wine is a class act from its attractive aromas to its lengthy finish... Supple and rounded at entry yet well-structured, the wine coats the palate, and its flavors deliver on the promise of its aromas." Connoisseurs' Guide to California Wines 10/96 1992 Corison Cabernet Sauvignon Ruby color with garnet edges. Expansive aromas with time in the glass. Still driven by red fruit including cassis, plums and cherries. Dark mint chocolate. Lovely development, a mature mouthful. This wine is often a favorite in vertical tastings. Drink now through 2008.
Corison Winery is a family owned winery that specializes in Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. Cathy Corison produces wines that walk the line between power and elegance, grace the table and enjoy a long, distinguished life.