*A client gifted me this wine after explaining it was Press Cellars' first attempt at a cabernet from their small winery in Angwin, Ca (Elsberg Vineyard) and asked me to tell her what I thought of it. Thanks again, Tracie - this one was worth writing about.*
Uncorking Press Cellars' Howell Mountain 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon was like walking into a well-preserved library and unearthing an unknown tome, which when opened, smelled of the earth as translated by humans. With a nose bigger than Cyrano de Bergerac, this cab knew how to hail some attention, but its overall stature reminded me of another beloved, literary character. This was Falstaff in a glass: jubilant, robust and round, with some heft to its swallow and a playful thickness that rolled around the tongue like a soccer ball during practice drills.
It was happiest when in the company of beef and lamb, where its tannin-y tendencies became all the more brazen. Pockets of dark berries and loam were found tucked in the heavy folds of its scarlet cloak, but once introduced to red meat, its reaction was similar to Bruce Banner transforming into the Hulk – meat make cab strong!! "POW!" - one right to the kisser...like a long good-bye lasting on the lips. This was the type of wine meant to be raised in a goblet, drank after a hunt with the hounds in front of a crackling fire while stabbing a side of beef and hoisting a lamb shank in the air.