Round Pond Estate
Rutherford, Napa Valley
Rutherford, California, U.S.A.
$39.00 -- H.E.B., Austin, TX
Color: Deep cherry red
Front: Cherry vanilla, banana
Middle: Clove, cream, raspberry
Back: Heat, blueberries, strong tannins
Burns clean?: Yes
Back when I first tried Caravan and liked it, the sommelier at Wolfgang's in Highlands, NC told me I should try Round Pond. I thought, awesome: and then it turned out their Cabs were really expensive. For some reason, this was on sale at HEB, so I went for it.
Admittedly, 2007 was a good year, but this is quite lovely under any circumstances. It takes a while to loosen up, and even then, the Rutherford tannins are still assertive. But the fruit is lovely (some people will hate the banana-vanilla-ish business in it, but I like that) and the oak is tempered. It's great with a grilled ribeye and tomato salad, and makes Band of Horses songs sound even better than usual.