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1979 Jordan Cabernet Sauvignon

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In its youth, 1979 Jordan Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon was considered a great wine in terms of fruit and finesse. It was assertive in fruit expression, yet well-rounded in bouquet. Large-format bottles continue to romance those lovers of aged wine.

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"1979 yielded a smaller crop than 1978 and not as opulent, but more concentrated. When crushed in the fermentation tanks, the fruit exploded with blackberry and cherry aromas and the tannins were equally concentrated. The harvest finished with a thunderclap of approval from the heavens. In fact, the very last gondola of grapes did not quite make it through the crusher—a cloudburst drenched the hopper and the grapes augering through it." — Winemaker Rob Davis

Tasting Notes

Three decades later, the 1979 vintage is desperately holding on to what is left of the once perfectly balanced components of acidity, fruit, alcohol, and tannins. It has a lovely aged Bordeaux quality (leather, cherry, herbal tea, plums), and a still-lively palate with soft, silky tannins. Bottles vary, but we’ve found some gems in our cellar—it’s time to check yours! While the 750mL is past its peak, larger formats should be opened now.

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Last Tasted: December 3, 2011


1979 Jordan Cabernet Sauvignon

Harvest Dates

September 14–October 20, 1979


Jordan Estate


Seven days in stainless steel to complete yeast fermentation, followed by five weeks in large oak tanks for malolactic fermentation


Aged in 54% French and 46% American oak barrels for 12 months with additional aging in upright oak tanks before 21 months in bottle before release

Varietal Info

93% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Merlot


Alexander Valley

Final Analysis

Alcohol: 12.8%; T.A.: 0.61 g/100mL; pH: 3.6

Bottling Dates

June 16–August 17, 1981

Release Date

March 1, 1983

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