• Home
  • 1996 Jones Family Cabernet Sauvignon

1996 Jones Family Cabernet Sauvignon

  • 90 WA
  • 93 WS
  • 89 IWC
  • Variety
    Cabernet Sauvignon

learn more about producers & collectors

SKU: 52088-1996-750

This item is available by the case only


This is a final sale item

Not eligible for cancellations or refunds

  • International Wine Cellar | Rating: 89

    Good full ruby. Cassis, oak spice, mint and roasted nuts on the nose. Sweet and dense in the middle, with a big chewy texture, but on the soft side. Finishes with substantial mouthcoating tannins. Not quite as long or refined as the '97.
    Author: Stephen Tanzer
    Issue: May/June 1999
  • Wine Spectator | Rating: 93

    Packs in lots of delicious flavors, from the ripe, plump plum, blackberry, black cherry and spice notes to the pretty toasty, buttery oak shadings. Very complete, dark, complex and concentrated, though the tannins are fine and integrated. 405 cases made.
    Author: James Laube
  • Wine Advocate | Rating: 90

    This project will be interesting to follow. The hillside vineyard south of Calistoga and north of St. Helena has been developed by famed vineyard manager David Abreu. Renowned wine-maker Heidi Peterson Barrett runs the show in the cellar. This limited production (405 cases) Cabernet Sauvignon is already drawing attention in insider circles. The first release from this 7-acre vineyard, the 1996, exhibits a dense, dark ruby/purple color, as well as a restrained but promising nose of black currants, blackberries, new oak, and minerals. The wine is sweet, elegant, and medium to full-bodied, with high tannin and an austere finish. The oak is nicely meshed, and the texture is attractive and chewy. If the tannin softens and its bouquet becomes more forthcoming, this 1996 Cabernet Sauvignon may merit a higher score. By the way, this wine improved significantly with exposure to air. The tannin became sweeter and better integrated after sixty minutes of aeration.
    Author: Robert Parker
  • Self | Rating: 95

    Author: jsp2000
  • Self | Rating: 94

    Consumed alongside 2004 Harlan. Not as powerful as the Harlan, but no featherweight either. Fine tannins with a 15+ second finish. May have been the non-regular cabernet crowd favorite. Cork was a tricky.
    Author: Derald L
  • Self | Rating: 94

    This wine keeps on putting on weight in the cellar. A huge powerful mouthful of Cabernet fruit.
    Drink Dates: 2005-2010
    Author: Daniel B
  • Self | Rating: 95

    Wow. Nose of blackberry and cedar with a hint of violet. Lush dark fruit and soft tannins characterize the wine. The wine is drinking medium to full bodied and promises to continue evolving.
    Drink Dates: 2005-2015
    Author: Conrad K
Jones Family Vineyards was established in 1996 as a family run winery with the singular focus to produce the finest Cabernet based wines from their special vineyards. Their location on a south facing hillside between St. Helena and Calistoga in the northern Napa Valley provides the ideal combination of soil and climate for the development of Cabernet Sauvignon.

Vineyard manager David Abreu and winemakers Heidi Barrett and Thomas Rivers Brown have worked to maximize the potential of the unique location to produce two outstanding wines, the Jones Family Vineyards Cabernet, and a Cabernet blend wine, The Sisters.

California is the heartland of wine production in the US, and the state that brought prestige to American wine thanks to the pioneers who built early wineries like Staglin, Beringer, Ridge, Mayacamas and Chateau Montelena in the 1800s. Its large geographic area ensures a great diversity in growing sites, varieties grown, and quality levels. Generalizations about the state's wines have numerous exceptions; however, a few key facts generally hold true—ample sunshine, dry weather during the growing season, and moderate winters prevail. Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon continue to dominate the state's production—albeit in continually smaller percentages, as growers continue to diversify. More than 100 different varieties can be found throughout the state.

Cabernet Sauvignon is a thick-skinned variety that is high in color, flavor, tannin, and body, displaying aromas of black currant, blackberry, violet, bell pepper, and black cherry. It is late-ripening and therefore struggles to grow in cool climates. Quality can vary tremendously depending on terroir, vineyard management, and winemaking style, with the highest quality wines coming from the Haut-Médoc and Graves in Bordeaux, and Napa and Sonoma in California.

The powerful flavors, tannin, and body of Cabernet Sauvignon make it well suited to ageing and allow it to stand up to a large proportion of new oak without overpowering the wine. 225-litre barriques are the most popular size barrel and French oak is commonly used by the best producers to add structural complexity and flavors of chocolate, vanilla, and clove to the nose and palate. The best wines, many of which are below, can age further in the bottle for decades.

Old-World Cabernet Sauvignon is often blended with Merlot, which ripens earlier than Cabernet and adds plum, softer tannin, and lighter body to this Bordeaux blend. These wines typically have earth-driven aromas such as wet leaves and truffle along with bell peppers and leather. First-Growth producers such as Château Lafite-Rothschild, Château Latour, and Château Margaux consistently produce some of the highest-quality Cabernet Sauvignon-based blends.

New-World Cabernet Sauvignon is seen both as a blend and single varietal. Warmer climates and long sunlight hours result in an extended growing season, bearing grapes with richer fruit, bigger tannin, higher alcohol, and lower acidity than their Old-World counterparts. Some of the best expressions of these full-bodied wines come from producers like Screaming Eagle, Hundred Acre, Schrader and Scarecrow.

All Cabernet Sauvignon pairs phenomenally well with meat-forward dishes such as rib-eye steak, short ribs, lamb shank, or a cheeseburger. Vegetable-forward dishes featuring mushrooms are also a great choice for this variety. 

Collector Data For This Wine

  • 139 bottles owned
  • 49 collectors
  • Average collector rating: 95
    (Out of 49 collectors)