Advice needed on Cali cabs

Hi all,

I just got offered a lot of 2002 Corison Kronos Cab for US$40 per bottle and one of 2004 Togni Cab at US$60 per bottle.

My experience with Cali Cabs is extremely limited and need some help here. Ratings seem pretty positive for these wines on CT and prices seem very good, what do you guys think? I’m mostly a Bordeaux drinker when it comes to Cabs, how do these wines stack up?

Great deal on the Kronos. About half price actually. Great deal for a Bordeaux drinker.
I think the Togni is about $35 underpriced. Lots of oak. Needs tons of time.

Taste either? I would before I jump.

Good advice - will probably try to get a bottle each. Thanks Mike.

Paul, I went back and searched my notes.

2004 Philip Togni Spring Mountain Cabernet- shame to kill so many trees. N/R

I last tasted toe 2002 Kronos a year ago. I did not write a note, which, for me, is not a good sign.

Definitely taste before buying…you can pick up all sorts of good deals on restrained cabs right now…Beringer, older Mondavi, Montelena, etc…no need to take a risk on wines youve never had.

Thanks chaps, definitely one bottle each then. More out of curiosity then anything. Might get brickbats for this comment, but I used to have a very negative impression of Cali cabs until a 1994 Dominus really blew my mind late last year. Trying to get my hands on more to try now.

I would jump on the Kronos.

The Togni… well, there’s always still time to buy Togni.

Any descriptors on what either of them are like? Especially the Kronos - I sorta get the idea from what has been said so far that the Togni is a modern, oaky, jammier type.

Opposite on the Togni. Takes many years to come together and hugely tannic young.

Kronos. I would back up the truck at that price. The “bordeaux” tag is a little deceptive, imo (although I did i.d. the 1996 as a bordeaux at CLONYC 14, one of only three misses for me on the night - obviously I wasn’t counting). So maybe bordeaux-like is accurate. More earthy, more restrained fruit, lower alcohol. I would still back up the truck.

Cabernet Lovers Of New York City : CLONYC 14 - 1996 Napa Cabs v. 1996 Left Bank Bordeaux" onclick=";return false;

PT is far from a modern, culty style. Togni wines require prolonged downtime, as much as 15-20 years in some vintages to get balanced and really shine. That is why folks are saying you have oodles of time to buy his 2004 wine. Make certain you are not shopping for Togni Tanbark Hill Cab which is ~ 1/2 price from his Estate Cabernet.

By the way, here is my recent tasting note on the 2002 Corison “regular” Napa Valley bottling:

  • 2002 Corison Cabernet Sauvignon - USA, California, Napa Valley (1/30/2010)
    Full bodied and lavishly flavored as expected from the 02 Napa vintage, but beyond just a big boy party wine, Cathy Corison has crafted a wine that causes pause for thought as well. Aromas of a bowl of berries burst from the glass but those flavors are well in balance on the palate accompanied by black cherry, dark chocolate, and cinnamon with secondaries of clove and mellow sweet oak. It’s a little early for this wine: it’s lovely now with and hour of air, but will be awesome in 2012 and wonderful for years to come. (92 pts.)

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As someone said above, I would back up the truck.

Thanks for all the comments. Very helpful. Looks like I will be getting more than a handful of the Kronos. It seems very well-priced.

The Togni is the regular Cab. The Tanbark Hill is going for even cheaper.

man whatever you have left over let me know I’ll buy the Kronos too at that price!

No such luck Charlie. I managed to get the one bottle each that I ordered to try. Unfortunately, all the others were sold out. Pity.