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Rodney Strong Cabernet Sauvignon Sonoma County 2014

Winemaker's Notes:

WINEMAKER Justin Seidenfeld

Rodney Strong Vineyards:
  Founded in 1959 by Rodney Strong, Rodney Strong Vineyards has one of the richest histories in Sonoma County. It was the first vineyard to plant Chardonnay in Chalk Hill (1965), and the first to release it (1977). It was also the first to plant Pinot Noir in the Russian River Valley (1968) and the first to make a single-vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon in Sonoma County (released in 1974). ... Read more
  Founded in 1959 by Rodney Strong, Rodney Strong Vineyards has one of the richest histories in Sonoma County. It was the first vineyard to plant Chardonnay in Chalk Hill (1965), and the first to release it (1977). It was also the first to plant Pinot Noir in the Russian River Valley (1968) and the first to make a single-vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon in Sonoma County (released in 1974). Success didn’t come overnight: hard work and perseverance, coupled with a strong business sense and tender loving care, allowed the vineyard to prosper. When Tom Klein purchased the vineyard in 1989, a major overhaul was planned, and in a short 10 years, sales grew over 600% to 500,000 cases. Today, Rick Sayre, David Ramey, Greg Morthole, and Justin Seidenfeld, winemakers at Rodney Strong Vineyards, source grapes from over 1,000 acres of vines throughout Sonoma County, across 14 estate vineyards from Alexander Valley, the Russian River Valley, Chalk Hill, and Sonoma Coast. All of these high-quality grapes have allowed the winery to become the success that it is today. Read less

Editorial Reviews for Rodney Strong Cabernet Sauvignon Sonoma County

Snooth User: Snooth Editorial
83464771,157
0.00 5
Vintage: 2013 01/14/2016

Dark blackberry aromas and black cherry preserves with an herbal note in the glass. Rich chocolate and black cherry in the mouth, with waves of chewy tannins coming in through the midpalate and adding an excellent texture to the plum and black currant flavors. On the finish this again turns a bit herbal showing some black olive notes alongside dried prune notes and some more chocolate.


Snooth User: Snooth Editorial
83464771,157
0.00 5
Vintage: 2012 11/13/2015

This broad shouldered wine is chalky and rich on the nose with a fair bit of heat blowing off straight from the bottle, and surprisingly delicate ripe black cherry and black currant aromas with deep vanilla notes framed with cedar. A rich wine in the mouth with loads of dark chocolate and rich vanilla notes, highlighting the cherry and blackberry notes flowing through the midpalate. This is big and bold yet elegant, with the same tannins you might find in chocolate, imparting a creamy texture rather than a drying one, and a finish that melts away with some length.


Snooth User: Snooth Editorial
83464771,157
3.50 5
Vintage: 2012 10/17/2014

Slightly herbal notes of blackberry and black cherry, with a hint of basil. Flavors are full and round, full of cassis, a bit of leather, loads of well balanced oak and cream and a nice warming heat. Finishes clean and long with a bit of tobacco, leather and cocoa powder.


Snooth User: Gregory Dal Piaz
89065238,749
3.50 5
Vintage: 2010 07/15/2013

This offers up a lovely blend of black fruit, dried herb and fairly assertive smoky oak on the nose, with the herbal note remaining quite dominant. Smooth, polished and easy drinking, the oak is quite well integrates on the plummy, black currant driven palate that shows excellent clarity of flavor, though it does come off as a touch candied in the mouth before yielding to well structured though fairly dry, long finish. 87pts


Snooth User: Gregory Dal Piaz
89065238,749
3.00 5
Vintage: 2007 03/10/2010

This is smoky and herbal with notes of old leather, cigarette ash, cigarette smoke, tomato leaf, tomato, and cassis on the nose. It’s fairly typical Sonoma Cabernet. On entry this is light bodied and soft with plenty of woody tannins and spice notes up front. The acidity is a hint low and the fruit is a bit roasted and fairly dark if low intensity on the mid-palate though with a nice black currant edge. The finish, which shows plenty of toasty oak, is a bit brighter with crisp tannins that add a bit of refreshment to this solid, middleweight Cab. 86pts


Snooth User: Gregory Dal Piaz
89065238,749
4.50 5
Vintage: 2006 03/10/2010

The nose on this shows unexpected restraint with pencil lead, black currants, cocoa, licorice and hints of dried thyme slowly rising from the glass. In the mouth this is rather concave at first with nice acids popping from the fruit across the mid-palate. It’s a taut, almost lean wine that keeps its considerable power hidden away. The tannins are very fine and very ripe and the oak influence, though noticeable is very nuanced and allows the pure, succulent fruit to take center stage. The finish shows a real release of inner mouth perfume and the tannins become immediately noticeable, while flavors of black fruit and cedar spice linger on the palate. This is a deceptively lithe wine with very appealing and fresh Cabernet flavors that somehow conceal the formidable alcohol of this wine without ever becoming cloying or over the top. Very refined and complex with excellent potential for improvement over 7-10 years in the cellar. 93pts


Snooth User: Gregory Dal Piaz
89065238,749
4.00 5
Vintage: 2005 12/22/2008

Deep and richly fruited this is dripping with plum jam, cassis, bramble, jalepeno jelly and sweet baking spice tones. The herbal and oak tones gain the upper hand here with some pine and green tomato tones but this remains attractive on the nose. Apon opening this is lovely in the mouth with tons of ripe fruit tannins, fine acidity and good density that is just a touch chewy. Perhaps a touch monolithic today and while the acidity begins to be more apparent this retains good harmony in the mouth. It’s pure cassis, olive and bitter spice notes on the backend and the finish as classic Cabernet. Elegant yet intense. 90pts


Member Reviews for Rodney Strong Cabernet Sauvignon Sonoma County

Add your review
Snooth User: chriscage
481309765
4.50 5
04/23/2018

An elegantly structured Sonoma Cabernet Sauvignon that shows medium-full body, full flavors of ripe juicy berry medley (cherry, grape, strawberry, raspberry, blueberry), hints of Earthy spice, such as black pepper and licorice root, alongside hints of alcohol warmth. Aromas of course precede the flavors and contain much the same in terms of warm sun drenched fruit, mineral rich soils, and muted alcohol & spice. Nice ruby red coloration with good clarity


Snooth User: raindance
2001541,834
2.50 5
Vintage: 2013 11/27/2015

Thanksgiving 2015. Thom's go to wine, he brought it. I had a 1/2 glass. It came in fifth of five wines I tasted.


Snooth User: Snooth Editorial
83464771,157
4.40 5
Vintage: 2012 10/17/2014

Four and a half glasses


Snooth User: nventure
283212624
0.50 5
Vintage: 2010 02/02/2014

too much vanilla


Snooth User: Amanda Grigg
130600641
4.00 5
Vintage: 2010 09/14/2013

Four glasses


Snooth User: Wolle
2034221,410
3.50 5
Vintage: 2009 07/30/2012

My Rating 88: This wine is extremely dry with not much body behind it. The overwhelming feature is a strong oak component that shines through in taste and nose. I personally think the wine maker went overboard with the oak chips he put into the barrels. With out the oak the wine would rate somewhat lower

User Tags:

To much oak

Snooth User: carriegpdx
61414795
3.00 5
Vintage: 2009 01/14/2012

A nice everyday wine.


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External Reviews for Rodney Strong Cabernet Sauvignon Sonoma County

External Review
Source: We Speak Wine
Vintage: 2015 01/16/2018

THE VINTAGE & VINEYARD: Early winter showers were followed by a warm, dry beginning to the new growing season, setting the stage for an early bud break. Alternating overcast days and heat waves continued through spring and summer, with a particularly hot period in late June, and an unseasonal rain in July. Harvest came in record early fashion; we harvested the Cabernet Sauvignon to make this wine between August 20 and October 9. TASTING NOTES: Our 2015 Sonoma County Cabernet Sauvignon is rich with dark cherry, plum and baking spices. The delicious fruit is accompanied by crushed violet and black pepper notes. The palate has medium tannins, lingering spicy oak fl avors and a lush fi nish. Enjoy this Cabernet now with charcuterie, spaghetti with Bolognese sauce or grilled steak. ALCOHOL: 13.5% TA: 0.60g/100 mL PH: 3.69


External Review
Source: We Speak Wine
Vintage: 2015 07/10/2018

THE VINTAGE & VINEYARD: Early winter showers were followed by a warm, dry beginning to the new growing season, setting the stage for an early bud break. Alternating overcast days and heat waves continued through spring and summer, with a particularly hot period in late June, and an unseasonal rain in July. Harvest came in record early fashion; we harvested the Cabernet Sauvignon to make this wine between August 20 and October 9. TASTING NOTES: Our 2015 Sonoma County Cabernet Sauvignon is rich with dark cherry, plum and baking spices. The delicious fruit is accompanied by crushed violet and black pepper notes. The palate has medium tannins, lingering spicy oak flavors and a lush finish. Enjoy this Cabernet now with charcuterie, spaghetti with Bolognese sauce or grilled steak. ALCOHOL: 13.5% TA: 0.60g/100 mL PH: 3.69


External Review
Source: We Speak Wine
03/29/2017

OUR STORY: At Rodney Strong Vineyards we focus on modern artisan winemaking, exclusively from Sonoma County, California. Our family-owned winery is committed to quality wines and to protecting our resources for the future. We are solar powered, certified sustainable, practice Fish Friendly Farming and Sonoma County’s first carbon neutral winery. HISTORY: Rod Strong recognized the Alexander Valley as an ideal place to grow Cabernet Sauvignon as far back as 1971, when he planted our first Cabernet vineyard on a hill known as Alexander’s Crown. Today we proudly farm four different estate vineyards on the benches and hillsides above the valley floor, where Cabernet displays the finest expression of the Alexander Valley terroir. THE VINTAGE & VINEYARD: A mild, dry winter encouraged early bud break in Sonoma County in 2014. The growing season was very warm overall, but tempered by overcast days in late July and late August plus a heavy drizzle in early September, which slowed ripening through extended hang time on the vines. We harvested the grapes at peak ripeness from September 5 through October 11 under ideal conditions. TASTING NOTES: A powerful Cabernet from the hillsides of Alexander Valley, this wine is lush with blackberries, dark plum, cassis and dark chocolate. The notes of dried herbs, black pepper and minerality reflect the terroir of the Alexander Valley. The soft, supple, and mature tannins give this wine a strong backbone, while the 18 months of barrel aging have softened the wine enough to enjoy now. Pair this wine with grilled rib eye steak, burgers and spaghetti Bolognese, or cellar for enjoyment over the next three to five years. CELLAR & FERMENTATION: 18 months in 100% French oak barrels, 50% new ALCOHOL: 14.5% TA: 0.62 gm/100ml PH: 3.63


External Review
Source: We Speak Wine
12/14/2016

OUR STORY: At Rodney Strong Vineyards we focus on modern artisan winemaking, exclusively from Sonoma County, California. Our family-owned winery is committed to quality wines and to protecting our resources for the future. We are solar powered, certified sustainable, practice Fish Friendly Farming and Sonoma County’s first carbon neutral winery. HISTORY: Rodney Strong recognized in the late 1960s that Sonoma County’s Alexander Valley was an exceptional area for heat loving Cabernet Sauvignon. He planted our fi rst Cabernet vineyard in 1971, Alexander’s Crown, on a small hill in Jimtown, and the reputation for fine Sonoma County Cabernet has never looked back. Today we have three exceptional Cabernet vineyards, from Jimtown, to Geyserville, and all the way north to Cloverdale, planted in the well-drained alluvial, volcanic, and uplifted shale/sandstone soils that make Sonoma County an ideal place for this noble grape. THE VINTAGE & VINEYARDS: A mild, dry winter encouraged early bud break in Sonoma County in 2014. The growing season was very warm overall, but tempered by overcast days in late July and late August and a heavy drizzle in early September, which slowed ripening through extended hang time on the vines. We harvested the Cabernet Sauvignon to make this wine from September 8 through October 12 under ideal conditions. TASTING NOTES: Our 2014 Sonoma County Cabernet Sauvignon is rich with dark cherry, plum and baking spices. The delicious fruit is accompanied by crushed violet and black pepper notes. The palate has medium tannins, lingering spicy oak flavors and a lush finish. Enjoy this Cabernet now with burgers, meat lovers pizza or grilled steak. CELLAR & FERMENTATION: 15 months in 75% American oak and 25% French oak barrels ALCOHOL: 13.5% TA: 0.59g/100 mL pH: 3.76


External Review
Source: We Speak Wine
Vintage: 2013 09/07/2016

TASTING NOTES: A powerful Cabernet from the hillsides of Alexander Valley, this wine is lush with blackberries, dark plum and dark chocolate. The notes of dried herbs, black pepper and minerality refl ect the terroir of the Alexander Valley. The soft, supple and mature tannins give this wine a strong backbone, while the 18 months of barrel aging have softened the wine enough to enjoy now. Pair this wine with braised short ribs, lamb shanks, beef ravioli or cellar for enjoyment over the next four to six years. CELLAR & FERMENTATION: 18 months in 100% French oak barrels ALCOHOL: 14.5% TA: 0.59 g /100 mL pH: 3.69


External Review
Source: We Speak Wine
Vintage: 2013 04/07/2016

TASTING NOTES: Our 2013 Sonoma County Cabernet Sauvignon is rich with dark cherry, plum and baking spices. The delicious fruit is accompanied by crushed violet and black pepper notes. The palate has medium tannins, lingering spicy oak fl avors and a lush finish. Enjoy this Cabernet now with grilled steak, pot roast, pork shoulder or pasta with a tomato sauce. THE VINEYARDS: 2013 was the kind of growing season that most would wish we could have every year a dry, frost-free spring, a warm summer without heat spikes, and a warm rain free autumn that allowed for picking the grapes perfectly mature. Warm days with cool evenings prevailed in September which kept sugar accumulation at an even pace and allowed acidity to remain in the fruit. We harvested the Cabernet Sauvignon to make this wine in September and October under ideal conditions. CELLAR & FERMENTATION: 15 months in 80% American oak and 20% French oak barrels ALCOHOL: 13.5% TA: 0.59g/100 mL PH: 3.76


External Review
Vintage: 2012 02/07/2015

Aromas of blackberry, cocoa, and currant lead to a rich, layered mouthfeel, replete with black cherry, cedar, and cassis, and structured with lush, mature tannins. Enjoy this seductive cabernet sauvignon now and over the next several years.


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Tasting Notes:

Our 2014 Sonoma County Cabernet Sauvignon is rich with dark cherry, plum and baking spices. The delicious fruit is accompanied by crushed violet and black pepper notes. The palate has medium tannins, lingering spicy oak flavors and a lush finish.

WINEMAKER Justin Seidenfeld

Closure: Composite Cork (Diam)

Notes: 75% American Oak, 25% French Oak

Wine Specs:

Alcohol: 13.5% pH: 3.76
Total Acidity: 0.59 grams per liter

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