Wine Review – 2005 Waterstone Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley, California


It can be done!  Yes we can!  These were the thoughts that were swimming in my head as the the 2005 Waterstone Cabernet Sauvignon was swimming in my mouth.  I don’t know much about wine economics and what the production and raw goods costs are to make a bottle of wine, but this was a wine that debunked the idea that good, $20ish cabernet sauvignon can’t be made from Napa Valley.   I’ve always heard talk from industry sources that basic economics dictates the ability make good, affordable wine with grapes coming entirely from Napa.  The raw goods (land) are expensive, therefore the product (grapes & wine) must be sold at a high enough price to recoup your costs with the hopes of eventually making a living.  I went to business school and went to class at least half of the time, so I know this theory makes sense from a very basic level, but a few wines, namely this Waterstone, show that there are other ways to make it happen.

This was one of the first wines we bought from the Woodland Hills Wine Company during our holiday break and boy were we impressed and stunned by the quality to price ratio of what we were guzzling.  In fact, if this were drunk blindly among a group of more expensive wines, say in the $40 – $50 range, it could have easily gotten lost in the shuffle and could have blended into the lineup seamlessly.  Yes, it was that good.

From what I understand, based on what the Woodland Hills Wine Company newsletter detailed, the grapes for this wine come from premium unnamed vineyards.  Grapes that were “declassified.”  For those of you who are not too familiar with this term in the context of the wine biz, in simplest terms, its quality reject grapes.  These are grapes or finished wine that do not meet up to a winemakers standards for their good stuff and thus are either bottled and labeled as a proprietary table wine with a catchy, corny name or simply sold off to someone else who will most likely bottle it under their own label.

Whatever man.  Sounds good to me.  As long as consumers like us benefit, who cares where and how it got to us.  The wine was loaded with flavors of berries and plums that were covered with chocolate and dunked in cassis.  Oh yeah, throw a little currants in there as well.  This is one of those wines you want to dunk your face in if the glass were big enough.

We parted ways with $21.99 + tax to get this wine at The Woodland Hills Wine Co.  Buy it online through them or look for it in your neighborhood wine shops.


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