2016 Claret, Napa Valley

Publication

Vinous

Author

Antonio Galloni

Date

May 2019

Rating

89

Review

The 2016 Claret is soft, supple and fruity, making it an excellent choice for drinking now and over the next handful of years. This Cabernet Sauvignon-based blend offers plenty of immediacy and near-term appeal. Juicy cherry, plum, flowers, mocha and licorice notes infuse the creamy, silky texture of this inviting red.

Publication

Wine Enthusiast

Author

Virginie Boone

Date

April 2019

Rating

92 pts, Editors' Choice

Review

This blends a majority of Cabernet Sauvignon with 26% Merlot, 12% Malbec, 8% Syrah and 2% Petit Verdot. Together, they interweave into a cohesive whole of clove, black pepper and meaty intensity and integrated oak. Soft and round on the palate, it pleases at an unbelievable price.

Publication

Christy Canterbury MW

Author

Christy Canterbury MW

Date

December 2, 2018

Rating

91

Review

Harmony, Grace & Thoughtfulness - Man & Bottle
I often think can find the winemaker in the wine, and yet again, that is the case with David Ramey’s 2016 Claret. On paper this bottling looks like a precise, acrobatic exercise in blending: its fruit hails 89% from Napa Valley and 10% from Russian River with 1% smattering of grapes from the Sonoma County, North Coast and Mendocino AVAs. Moreover, it’s a mix of 52% Cabernet Sauvignon, 26% Merlot, 12% Malbec, 8% Syrah and 2% Petit Verdot that sees 12 months of French and American oak barrel aging, only 13% of which is new. Yet from the first to the last drop, this fusion radiates harmony, grace and thoughtfulness, just like the man behind the juice.
 
Though the creative process may have been complicated, it doesn’t show at all in the wine, not even in a wine this young. The impeccably ripe blueberry and black cherry fruit glides across the palate with a sensuous, lightly mouthcoating texture. The svelte, supple tannins and playful acidity bewitch the palate with easy refreshment. The reverberating, sweet summer berry finish jazzes up with the freshness of aloe and flint as the wine unfolds in the decanter. Impossible to resist and reflect on now, if you lost a bottle, it would easily age well for several years. Drink: 2018-22

Publication

Vinography

Author

Alder Yarrow

Date

December 18, 2018

Rating

between 8.5 and 9

Review

Medium to dark garnet in color, this wine smells of cherry and tobacco leaf and cola. In the mouth, cherry cola and cocoa powder mix with boysenberry and a faint hint of citrus peel. Muscular tannins emerge on the finish. Good acidity and length. A blend of 52% Cabernet Sauvignon, 16% Merlot, 12% Malbec, 8% Syrah, and 2% Petit Verdot.

Publication

Bigger Than Your Head

Author

Fredric Koeppel

Date

January 29, 2019

Rating

Excellent | Wine of the Day

Review

Wine of the Day, No. 464...The Ramey Claret 2016 aged 12 months in French and American oak, a scant 13 percent new barrels, and is all the better for such judicious treatment. The color is dark ruby-purple shading to a transparent rim; it’s a ferrous and sanguinary red wine, whose black currant and raspberry scents and flavors are influenced by a ripe, spicy nature and deep permutations of iodine, iron, graphite and a fleshy, meaty character. Foresty tannins feel finely sifted into a firm texture that flows with lithe suppleness on the palate, abetted by the dynamics of lip-smacking acidity. 14.5 percent alcohol. Very drinkable yet a serious effort. I hear this one crying out for standing rib roast, braised short ribs, a medium-rare ribeye steak, hot and crusty from the grill. Now through 2022 or ’24. Excellent. (Click here to read the complete review.)