The 2010 Cain Five is dense and concentrated without being heavy. It is probably the most tightly wound Cain Five since the 1994. The key point is that even though it will easily last another twenty years, you can drink it today. If you do, it’s best if you decant the wine into a carafe to give it some air and let it breathe and relax. Everything is in place; it could only come from the Cain Vineyard, with its perfume and satin-smooth mouth-feel. You’re sure to recognize the unmistakable signature of flowers, berries, herbs, tar—all layered on a lovely earthy background. This is an exotic wine, quite unlike the big sweet Napa Cabs we all know.
The wines that intrigue us begin in the vineyard, and this is a key to the originality of each wine, but it doesn’t end there. The 2010 Cain Five reminds me of one of my favorite themes: wine is the result of fermentation. We begin in the Cain Vineyard, which grows grapes like no other. The wine is revealed in the cellar—slowly, step by step. Yes, here is the essence of fruit, and yet, it goes far beyond. Wine—at least the wines we’re interested in—transcend their origins in the fruit. There is so much more complexity here than simply fruit. And yet, it is not the “product” of our winemaking either. Magic has occurred. We don’t know who, how or why, but we know that it has, and we know enough to let it happen.
Cabernet Sauvignon 58% Merlot 17%
Cabernet Franc 15% Petit Verdot 5% Malbec 5%
100% Cain Vineyard, Spring Mountain District, Napa Valley
January 1, 2015