Robert Parker: 93
" Under the reign of Justin Meyer, Silver Oak Cellars has become one of the great success stories of California, partly because Justin Meyer realized twenty years ago (before many of his peers) that wine should be a beverage of joy. His formula is simple, (1) pick very ripe fruit, (2) age it 30 months in mostly new American oak barrels, and (3) bottle the wine without stripping out its perfume and flavor. When they are released, the Silver Oak Cabernets are out and out delicious - there is simply no other way to describe them. My reservations about their ageability have disappeared as some of the rich, flashy vintages of the mid-eighties (1984 and 1985) remain as ostentatious and sumptuous as ever. My only criticism is that Silver Oak fans drink up the 10,000 cases of Napa Cabernet Sauvignon and 40,000 cases of Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon long before anyone has a chance to find out how well these wines hold up. Future releases are all immensely impressive, sumptuous, overtly oaky, ravishing examples of All-American Cabernet Sauvignon that will stop tasters dead in their tracks with their blasts of ripe fruit and spice.
The 1993s are revealing even finer integration of toasty new American oak. The full-bodied 1993 Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon offers peppery, blackcurrant-scented aromas, as well as gobs of cherry and cassis fruit. Approachable now, it should drink well for 10-20 years as I detect more tannin and structure. Friends tell me the release day party at Silver Oak is not to be missed, as the winery is besieged by lawyers, Hell's Angels, and show girls in addition to thousands of just "plain ole folks" who arrive to lay claim to their allocations of Silver Oak Cabernet!" (Dec 1995)
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