Gamble Family Vineyards 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley
91, Reviewed by Michael Rockich, AppellationsTen
I was really impressed by Gamble’s Sauvignon Blanc recently, so when the opportunity came to try their 2016 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon, I jumped. A Bordeaux blend of 82% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Malbec, 4% Cabernet Franc, 3% Petit Verdot and 3% Merlot, Gamble’s dense inky purple, ruby hued 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon with numerous legs descending the glass delivers a delicious character with profuse pungent aromas and flavors of black cherry, blackberry jam, blueberries, fruited pastry, and flowers. This mid-weight offers plenty of extract, a very fine coating texture with velvety tannins and solid structure, elevated acidity making for lift, focus, and food compatibility, excellent balance, all the while oozing copious succulent fruit. Everything is properly intense and long about this wine, best categorized as hedonistic and virtually textbook! Although this wine saw plenty of new oak, the oak was quite elusive. Élevage lasted 20 months in new French, Hungarian and American oak. The wine was bottled unfined and unfiltered.
Launcelot Gamble began cattle ranching and farming several crops in Napa County in 1916. The Gambles acquired land in Oakville in 1955, and in 1981 at age 20 Tom Gamble, including partners, began Gamble Family Vineyards by purchasing his first vineyard. Organic certification was granted in 2008, and by 2013 construction of the Gamble winery began.
The Gamble Family farms about 175 acres of estate vineyards from several Napa Valley AVAs – Oakville, Yountville, Mt. Veeder, and Rutherford, producing several wines: a Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Petite Sirah, a red blend, a rosé, and not to forget the Sauvignon Blanc, all from Napa Valley. See my reviews on the 2017 Sauvignon Blanc and the 2019 Sauvignon Blanc.
I knew this 1,729-case offering of 2016 Cabernet would pair well with roast turkey, especially so with sides of crispy pan-fried Sangre potatoes and sautéed Fuji apples with Walla Walla sweet onions.
A sample for review
All photos, credit Gamble Family Vineyards. Timeline on vista.