San Francisco Chronicle

December 26th, 2008

2008’s Most memorable wines

Jon Bonné

#10, 2005 Scarecrow Rutherford Cabernet Sauvignon

There’s something almost frustrating about a blockbuster Cabernet with such amazing provenance. From a bountiful vintage and the gnarly 60-plus-year-old vines of Rutherford’s J.J. Cohn vineyard, now overseen by Bret Lopez and Mimi DeBlasio, Celia Welch Masyczek crafted a pitch-perfect expression of Napa Cabernet that’s as seductive and perfumed as it is dense and wound in its tannic power. Even as Masyczek walked me through her outstanding lineup of wines in October – Hollywood & Vine, DR Stephens, Lindstrom and more – the Scarecrow stood clear, making its undeniable point about the virtues of vines from the pre-clonal, pre-rootstock era that have been given time to adapt to a very special patch of ground.