||1997 Cabernet Sauvignon:
Malvoisie (Malvasia, syn Malviose):
Alcohol by volume:
This was a truly outstanding wine that rivaled any Cabernet I have ever tasted. On several occasions we received many comments
and questions about the wine from people who just assumed this was a "known" wine.
The wine had very good fruit when it was young, but excellent acidic qualities that kept it bright on the tongue. The nose
had distinct floral and perfume tones. This changed over time and seemed to become a little richer and mellow with age.
The taste seemed to become more cherry in quality over time.
About the Year
Nineteen-ninety-seven was an excellent year. In some ways, though, it will always seem particularly good because 1996 was such
a difficult one. In 1996 I was working for a small company and my boss had developed lung cancer. Throughout his treatment I
was the last remaining person at the company and was keeping everything going and trying to help with a potential buy-out that
was on the table. On the day of my boss’s lung surgery, I threw my back out and could barely walk. So, there I was – on
my back, I could not stand up, could not get to work, my girlfriend and I broke up, I was not being paid, my parents had to
bring me food, and I had to sit there and watch the Yankees win the World Series. (Not easy as a Red Sox fan.) My boss died a
month or so after that surgery. So, 1996 was a tough one – but 1997 was different.
I’ll never forget opening the dirty window of my salt-covered truck one March day – after one of the worst winters on
record for Boston – and hearing these lyrics on the radio from the band the Counting Crows: "A long December and there's
reason to believe, maybe this year will be better than the last...” It was a lot like listening to the radio after breaking
up with someone. You know, when it sounds like every song was written just for you. That’s what that was like. This
time it was a great feeling.
The investors in the company decided to keep the company going, we hired a new president, and I went back to making wine
(after a two-year hiatus). My old boss was a big food and wine fan (and an original crew member on Julia Child’s first shows)
which made the success of the 1997 vintage very gratifying. He would have liked it.
The grapes had excellent sugar content. It actually turned out to be the best wine we had made to that point. We put a
bottle of this wine on every table at our wedding in 2000.