TN: Ch.St.Jean CabSauv '79 & '80....(short/boring)

We tried these two from the archives at our Cab tasting ystrday at Pig+Fig:

  1. Ch.St.Jean CabSauv WildwoodVnyds/SonomaVlly (12.9%; Hrvstd: Oct.11; SaH: 22.8 Brix, TA: 0.76 %; Bttld: Dec1981, TA: 0.625%) RichardArrowood 1979: Very dark/near black color w/ slight bricking; fairly strong blackcurranty/Cab/licorice some smokey/toasty/oak light earthy fairly complex slight cedary/pencilly nose; soft rather tangy/metallic/tannic strong blackcurranty/CS/licorice bit drying out light toasty/oak complex flavor w/ some drying tannins; very long/lingering strong blackcurranty/CS/licorice/pungent some toasty/oak bit cedary/pencilly/oldCab rather complex finish w/ light metallic tannins; drying out slightly but still plenty of blackcurrant/Cab fruit w/ rather rugged tannins. $15.29 (Q)

  1. Ch.St.Jean CabSauv WildwoodVnyds/SonomaVlly (14.7%; Hrvstd Oct 18, SaH: 25.6Brix, TA: 0.89%; Bttld: March 1983, TA: 0.65%) 1980: Very dark/near black color w/ slight bricking; very strong blackcurranty/Cab/ripe/licorice/chocolaty strong toasty/smokey/oaktoasty/smokey/oak loads of Cab fruit nose; bit soft loads of ripe/blackcurranty/CS/licorice strong toasty/oak slight earthy bit metallic/astringent/drying rather complex flavor w/ modest astringent tannins; very long/lingering very strong blackcurranty/CS/licorice/ripe/chocolaty strong toasty/oak slightly metallic/drying fairly complex finish w/ light chewey tannins; still loads of Cab fruit but drying out a bit on the palate.

A wee BloodyPulpit:

  1. Both of these wines had very little ullage, not even down to the bottom of the necks. Both had sound corks that came out easily w/ the Durand.
    These were both pretty similar wines w/ an amazing amount of Cab fruit still there. There was no signs of oxidation in either wine. Both were showing some of that metallic character of an old wine & drying out a bit on the palate but the intense fruit covered up a lot of the rugged tannins still remaining in the wine. Amazingly alive wines for 40 yrs old.
    Dick Arrowood was, of course, the founding winemaker at Ch.St.Jean in 1974. He developed a strong reputation for building ageable Cabs. Less known was his expertise in making botrytis white wines. After he left Ch.St.Jean, he founded ArrowoodCllrs and had a very good run there. Arrowood is now owned by the JacksonFamilyWines empire. Interestingly, they make no mention on their Site of Dick. He then went on to found AmapolaWineCllrs, where I believe he still is involved.
    Dick had a chemistry background and was always interested in our radiochemistry work here at LosAlamos. I once tried to arrange a tour of the LosAlamos facility but it fell thru because of security issues.

I’ve had some of those old 70s and 80’s era dessert wines they made, very good and seem to be able to age forever.

Nice notes.