I Shared My Cornerstone

I’m a little late with this write up!  On May 30, while Twitter took a nap, winos around the country gathered at the same time for a Cornerstone Cellars Twitter Taste Live. Sadly, we weren’t really able to share our thoughts live since Twitter wouldn’t cooperate, but that’s okay, I’ll tell you about these lovely wines here instead!  That same night, I had the Northern Virginia Woot tasting group over for a Rosé and BBQ tasting…they also got to benefit from my involvement in TTL and enjoy the 3 Cornerstone Cabernets with me!

I’ve told you previously about the 2004 Howell Mountain Cornerstone Cellars Cabernet and the 2005 Napa Cornerstone Cellars Cabernet.  This time, I also had the pleasure of enjoying the 2002 Howell Mountain Cornerstone Cabernet.  Overall, the group polished off the 2002, leaving the 2004 and 2005 with some in the bottle.  You’d think that would mean everyone preferred the 2002, but no, the general consensus was for the 2004…I think the folks who preferred the 2002 were just thirstier! 😉 I purchased these wines from Bin Ends Wine at a discount to participate in the tasting and they all had real cork closures. The bottles went to the recycling before I noted the alcohol content.

2002 Howell Mountain Cornerstone Cabernet Sauvignon. Library Selection retails for $125 from the Winery, and can be found on the web for as low as $90.

On the nose I found chocolate, berries, black cherries, black fruit, and pepper.  It’s tight.  This one seems built to age…maybe try it in 20 years or so.  I left this in my glass for over two hours before going back to it to taste again as it was too tight.  I found black fruit, cherry, currants, black plums, black cherry, blackberries, spice, and tannins to spare.  After 3 hours in my glass this most definitely took my vote for my favorite of the three.

2004 Howell Mountain Cornerstone Cabernet Sauvignon. Retails for $100 from the Winery.

On the nose I found dark chocolate, cherry, earth, minerals, leather, black fruit, and back currants.  In the mouth I found anise, herbs, leather, black fruit, black currants, blackberries, spice, and sage.  I would really like to try this again in 10 years.  This is a dark, tight wine, with tannins to spare and is far too young to drink!

2005 Napa Cornerstone Cabernet Sauvignon. Retails for $65 from the Winery.

This was my favorite wine the first time I tasted the 2004 and 2005.  It’s more approachable right off the bat.  I found cinnamon, spice, baking spice, all spice, back currants, black berries, brown sugar, herbs, baking chocolate, and black cherries.  In the mouth I got black cherry, juicy black berries, earth, anise, spice, cinnamon, red hots, minerals, leather, and pepper.  This one has really lush fruit, and most certainly can be drank now.

It was great to have lots of folks over to taste these wines with me as I always like seeing how other people react to the same wines…hence why I enjoy TTL so much, except this time when Twitter failed! The Cornerstone wines are just fantastic, and are built to be cellared for years to come.


4 Responses

  1. I hate when twitter goes down… it always seems to happen at the worst moments too!

    Great review! Cheers!

  2. Megan – thanks for the kind comments on our wines and I’m thrilled everyone in your group enjoyed them so much. It was sad that Twitter took a nose dive just when we were getting warmed up!

    I love to show the 02 now as it was a vintage that was trashed by The Wine Spectator, but now the wines are proving how short sighted they were. Not all vintages have to taste great as soon as they’re bottled to become great wines. With serious cabernet you have to be patient.

    Today I had a lovely 02 Far Niente with lunch with winemaker Stephanie Putnam who said it was one of her favorite wines that she made while she was the winemaker there. Indeed early press over generalizations about vintages can be very wrong.

    Thanks again,

  3. Great review. My wife and I had a bottle of 2004 Howell mountain Cab a few months ago. It was truly a religious experience. Just incredible.

  4. Doesn’t it Randy?

    Hey Craig! I think everyone was happy that my BBQ was on the same night as the Cornerstone tasting…I didn’t tell them ahead of time, so it was a pleasant surprise! I would love to see that 02 again in maybe 5 years or so….it had a lot going on, and definitely didn’t deserve to be trashed as a vintage!

    Thanks for stopping by Michael. Howell Mountain fruit is fabulous and with a great winery like Cornerstone, you can’t go wrong!

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