In light of all the blowback in the “most overrated” thread, I thought it might be a nice change of pace to reward great producers. Also, the hivemind here has a lot of knowledge that might be useful to put into an easily digestible form.
So - a proposal.
Open to all posters.
*Vote in this thread for your 5 favorite current producers of Cabernet Sauvignon in California. Any and all styles welcome. It’s YOUR personal favorite, not others.
*The only requirement to vote is that you RANK 1 through 5 and write at least one sentence for each producer explaining why you like the wines, to ensure that everyone who votes takes it at least semi-seriously
*Voting ends Wednesday, 8/26, at 8PM(ET)
*I’ll tally the results and generate a BerserkerRanking. Points awarded - in order of placement on each ballot - go 7-4-3-2-1, so first place votes will get a slight bonus.
If this takes, we can continue for other regions / grapes.
Open to refinements. I borrowed this system from a ranking exercise on another board and it worked remarkably well, especially the requirement to write at least one sentence explaining each vote. I’m limiting to 5 because I think a smaller list will encourage more voting, and the distinction (for me at least) between my 9th and 11th favorite producer gets pretty arbitrary. But I think everyone has a small handful of producers they really love and go back to time after time.
Point of clarification – when you say current producers, do you mean ranking the wines that are being released by that producer now, or on the basis of that producer’s track record? Big difference between 90s Montelena and current releases … same deal for Heitz, Mondavi and many others.
Nope. It should all “come out in the wash” - if someone votes all for atypical AFWE type places, there should be someone else voting for a big fruit producer.
Nope. If there’s a really expensive producer and you only had 1 bottle ever and it blew your mind and you want to vote them #1, god bless. I guess you have to have tried the wines at least once. But that goes without saying.
Sure. Let’s make it Wednesday, 8PM (ET).. I’ll edit the first post.
Favorite is whatever you want it to be! Like MVP voting in sports, it is a subjective judgment in the eye of the voter. I’m going to change the title to “5 favorite” producers to make clear that this is totally about collecting personal favorite and doesn’t aspire to be anything more objective than that.
It’s a producer ranking, rather than a per bottle ranking, so this generally shouldn’t be an issue, but I would say blend so long as it is mostly cab or thought of as a left-bank styled wine. Most expansive definition possible - goal here isn’t to disqualify on technicality but to encourage folks to be able to support the wines they like the most.
EMH - balance, finesse, and by far the most cal cab in the cellar.
Ridge - started out in the 1990s drinking the Santa Cruz Mtns, always offered great value. Way too much later discovered the Monte Bello which rivals the EMH as my favorite
Togni - the 1999 blew me away. Never had a nose like that on a cal cab.
Justin - only the isosceles. The wine I turn to when looking for something bigger. Retains balance despite the higher alc and riper fruit.
??? Would be Soter era Étude but not the current stuff. Expect it will be Calluna based on the Merlot based wines but haven’t popped a Cab yet. Dutch Henry and Corison could also fit but haven’t had either one more recent than the 2002 vintage.