But by the time we got around to trying the Archstone Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 in December – on sale at both Pearson’s and Cleveland Park Wines for the same $10 – we heard from the folks at Pearson’s that it would be among the last wines from Archstone (which also made a reportedly excellent 2008 chardonnay). There’s little information available about this label, which is said to be an offshoot of Sterling Vineyards, a well-known high-end Napa Valley producer that introduced a line of $8 to $12 wines back in 2000 under the label Sterling Vintner’s Collection.
That was before it showed up on sale at Potomac Wine & Spirits for an outrageous $6.99 a bottle. Regular readers know that the bulk of our recommendations are wines that are widely available around town and are consistently pleasing year in and year out; the type that are perfect “house wines” for everyday drinking. But occasionally there are one-off bargains at one particular wine shop that are just too good to pass up.
Compare prices or find Archstone wines online or at a wine shop near you.
This phantom label hasn’t been reviewed by the professional critics, but there is plenty of support out in cyberspace for the notion that this wine is worth a try at $7 a bottle.
“Pretty light in color, but delivers a fruit forward cab at a very low price,” wrote a member of the Snooth.com wine social network who posts tasting notes under the name mwid625. “Beautiful nose of raisin, currant, fig, plum, with a nice mouthfeel. The finish is pleasant with no lingering heat….”
“I got this wine for $9.00. A Napa Cab for less than $10.00 is amazing and this is worth every cent,” exclaims CellarTracker.com member Mbt64. “Declassified wine that drinks like twice the price. … Nice full bodied red. Fruit forward, berry, chocolate, vanilla. Nice middle and smooth finish. If you can find this for $12 or less you just can't go wrong.”
“In your glass the wine is deep purple in color,” wrote Pete in March on his “A Couple of Wines” blog. “The nose brings blackberry jam, cassis, and black cherries with a very subtle element of cloves. On the palate, the wine is fruit forward with very nice black fruit flavors and smooth, very mild tannins.”
He praised the lingering fruit on the finish that you wouldn’t expect from an inexpensive fruit-forward California cabernet, adding “I highly recommend spending the $13 and trying some yourself. You might just find an every day bargain that works for you.”
We’d highly recommend spending at least $14 (plus tax) on two bottles. If $13 a bottle is a bargain, than $7 is a steal and well worth finding a parking spot in Georgetown to pick this one up by the case.
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