Dave Allen, Stephen Brook and Terry Kandylis of Decanter Magazine, blind tasted through 197 California Cabernets from the 2015 vintage for the December issue of the publication. 2015 Monte Bello was among the highest scoring wines receiving 96 points.
“Recent vintages in America’s sunny west coast state have been generally well received, producing many highly rated wines, and, reports Stephen Brook, the latest release 2015s are true to form… It was an early harvest in 2015 and, as is so often the case, the decision on when to pick was crucial to ensure an ideal balance of sugar, acidity and tannin.Those wineries that got it right ended up with excellent wines.”
“The excellent performance of the two wines from Santa Cruz showed that tasters are by no means Napa-fixated”
“One of California’s best known wines, the Ridge Monte Bello was first produced in 1962, with the original blocks of the Monte Bello vineyard itself being planted as far back as 1886. It is a wine rich in history, with the 1971 vintage placing 5th in the legendary Judgement of Paris tasting in 1976. The 2015 vintage is composed of 77% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Merlot, 7% Petit Verdot and 5% Cabernet Franc, with native yeasts being used for fermentation. Sourced from 22 of the 25 Monte Bello parcels, the wine is aged in 97% American and 3% French oak for 16 months.”
– 96 Points – Drinking Window 2019 – 2026