|Caramelized onions and goat cheese|
In this case, we had found a deal online where five years of the Raymond Vineyards Private Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon were up for sale. Limited amounts were available. By the time I had ordered, only four years were still for sale, so I picked up the 1986, 1987, 1989, and the 1992.
We opened the evening with a small cheese platter, which included Gouda, a sharp Vermont Cheddar cheese, and some aged Parmesan. Additionally, I like to experiment on friends, so I created a fig tepanade (figs, olives, capers, walnuts, olive oil, balsamic, and thyme) which was put on slide baguettes with goat cheese. We also had some crostini with blue cheese and caramelized onions.
|Cheeses and fig tepanade|
|Grilled lamb w/ blackberry sauce|
The 1986 vintage faced heavy winter rains in February and March followed by a warm spring leading to early bud break. In general, the wines of 1986 were round and soft. Some late season rains posed some minor issue for those that harvest late. Our bottle - The cork broke about mid way, but no signs of oxidation, or signs of leakage. Light aromas of tart cherries, but more bouquet leaning to leather and oak. Tannins were flat.
|Bison & blue cheese stuffed mushrooms|
The 1989 vintage was a dry year with low rainfall and a cool spring, but warm weather late. Without some canopy thinning, wines of this vintage would pick up some vegetal aromas (as did our bottle). Our bottle – Once again, our cork broke about mid cork, No signs of leakage, or oxidation. This wine was the most vegetal/herbal of the four. Eucalyptus, celery, mixed with cherries and earth notes.
|Corks: 1986, 1987, 1989, 1992|
All the wines held up well (better than I can say for the corks). Raymond Vineyards once again, proves that it stands with any of the fine wines of Napa Valley. And, their wines do age well.