This may be the finest expression of the vineyard to date. Cool spring and summer seasons were offset by bursts of warm weather. This resulted in mid-August veraison and perfectly ripe fruit in late October.
In the glass, you are immediately struck by the depth of color. Winemaker Luc Morlet calls it violet foncé. The intensity of the color is a tantalizing promise of the aroma and flavors to come. The nose is filled with wild berries, Santa Rosa plums, cassis and allspice, with undertones of dried mushrooms and light floral notes. A sip reveals a complex symphony of boysenberries, blackberries and dark Bing cherries blended with layers of pepper, warm spices, graphite and mocha. Beautifully structured tannins and an easy minerality lead to an exceptionally long silken finish.
This well-structured wine is eminently drinkable now, but will age beautifully over the next 15-20 years.
136 cases produced.
93 POINTS Just as impressive as it was last year, the 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon caresses the palate with layers of dark fruit, smoke, tobacco and incense. This is a fairly approachable Cabernet for a mountain wine. The 2009 shows quite a bit of character and complexity, even if the tannins are a bit soft for a mountain wine. The dark, brooding finish has plenty of intensity and character. - Antonio Galloni, The Wine Advocate, July 2013
93 POINTS The 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon is a dark, inward wine. Cool, saline notes, espresso, graphite and blackberry jam are some of the many nuances that take shape in the glass. This is a decidedly opulent, full-throttle wine, yet there is an element of underlying minerality that keeps things beautifully focused from start to finish. Anticipated maturity: 2014-2025.
Vineyard owner Ken Link planted his hillside vineyard in Knights Valley in 2000. The vineyard sits at about 1,200 feet above sea level and is composed of volcanic soils. Linked Vineyard owners Jessica Link and Drew Johnson brought on consulting oenologist Luc Morlet to oversee winemaking. Morlet of course has a long history with Knights Valley, starting from his time at Peter Michael, where he remains a consultant. Based on the three wines I tasted, I think it is fair to say Linked Vineyards is off to a rousing start.
- Antonio Galloni, The Wine Advocate, February 2012
90 POINTS (100% cabernet sauvignon, from a vineyard planted at 1,100 feet): Good full ruby. Enticing aromas of black cherry, minerals and spices. Broad, classically dry and extremely backward, hinting at dark fruits but revealing little in the way of easy sweetness. Finishes with mouth coating tannins that will require patience. Winemaker Luc Morlet does part of the fermentation in puncheon, as without a softer extraction these mountain tannins from volcanic ash soil would come across as rustic.
- Steven Tanzer, International Wine Cellar, May 2012
92 POINTS This pitch black colored Cabernet opens with an oak and blueberry bouquet with a hint of leather. On the palate, this wine is full bodied, balanced, and smooth. The flavor profile is a mild oak infused black currant with hints black olive and dark chocolate. This wine would pair well with a well-marbled ribeye steak. Enjoy – Ken
- Ken's Wine Guide, January 2014