I’m a big fan of Franciscan wine. Their $20 cabs are great and you can find them on the shelf pretty-much anywhere.
But I was definitely curious when I found out they make another “big daddy” wine available only at the winery: Stylus Cabernet Sauvignon. My curiosity definitely cost me as this is one of the most expensive bottles I’ve purchased to date. It retails for $100, but thanks to the folks at The Wine Spies, I got a more “palatable” deal.
So I went home to see family this Easter and thought, “What the heck… I’ll bring the Stylus with me. I might get hit by a bus tomorrow.”
In a word, this wine is ridiculous. Ridiculously tasty. I vividly remember the taste of this wine weeks later. You can tell this wine is in a different league as you pour it into your glass. It sits there with its blood-tinged color, daring you to come closer. It’s exactly what you want a cab to smell like, too — complex and fruity without any distracting vegetal aromas.
The flavors are powerful and the sipping is smooth. The alcohol gives it a little heat but it gently floats over your tongue. It doesn’t make you recoil at all. It reminds me of sipping on an old brandy where you get the sensation it just melts in your mouth. There’s a mild drying effect on the inner cheeks which I personally really like. On the dry side but nicely balanced. I was sad when we finished this bottle, but as Dr. Seuss once said, “Don’t cry because it’s over. Smile because it happened.”
The Technical Stuff:
Date Tasted: April 7, 2012
Varietal: Cabernet Sauvignon
Winery: Franciscan Estate
Region: Napa, California
Price: $100 (more recent vintages are $75)