O’Shaughnessy’s 2014 Howell Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon is a gorgeous and multilayered wine that showcases the complexity of all seven of the Bordeaux varietals that they farm. The wine is dark ruby red with aromas of raspberries, currants, ripe plum, and a bit of smoke. Focused flavours of wild cherry jam, plum butter, and raspberry preserves are followed by a long finish with integrated acidity and complex palate-filling tannins. Muscular, but with restrained elegance, this wine carries the O’Shaughnessy trademark of balance and power.
“The 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain is going to be a knock-out once it loses some baby fat and the new oak incorporates a bit more. Deep, powerful and vertical in feel, the 2014 possesses remarkable depth, intensity of colour and balance. Inky, deep and creamy, with a real sense of gravitas, the 2014 is pure class through and through. 2018-2026”
95+ points, Antonio Galloni, vinous.com, Dec 2016
“Betty O’Shaughnessy bought her property on Howell Mountain in 1996, and ever since 1999 has had the very talented Sean Capiaux making her wines. Her vineyards on Howell Mountain sit at a high elevation of just under 2000 feet in the red, rocky, volcanic soils the area is known for. I have always been a big fan of these wines, as they are full-flavored but incredibly pure and well-balanced, and that has continued with her bevy of 2014s. The sensational 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain (which is reasonably priced, given how superb it is) is her largest cuvée of just under 3,300 cases. It is a blend of 79% Cabernet Sauvignon and the rest tiny quantities of Malbec, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Carmenère, Petit Verdot, and a real head scratcher, St. Macaire. Inky purple to the rim, with notes of white flowers, licorice, forest floor and graphite, this wine exhibits classic mulberry, blackberry and blackcurrant fruit notes, some background, vague oak, a full-bodied, beautifully proportioned mouthfeel, and a layered finish. Like most 2014s, it can be drunk now, but it has at least two decades of cellaring potential.”
95 points, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, Dec 2016
“Deep, dark ruby. Very primary yet already complex scents of crushed cassis, black raspberry, violet and dark chocolate enlivened by a captivating stoniness. Densely packed, seamless and suave, conveying a captivating impression of sweetness and spreading out impressively to saturate the palate. This very deep, youthful wine boasts a wonderful pliancy of texture and elegance and shows a creaminess to its tannins that gives it the early edge over the even more backward 2013 release. Splendid and quite complete.”
95 points, Stephen Tanzer, April 2018