For the New Year, 2016, we’ve decided to say goodbye to 2007. I’m referring to our last bottle of 2007 Simi Cabernet Sauvignon from Alexander Valley in Sonoma, California.
We first tasted Simi in 2010 when we owned our liquor store and brought home a bottle of the 2007 vintage. We liked it well enough to buy an extra case for home consumption. By 2012, when we were down to the last three bottles, we bought a case of the 2010 vintage and were surprised by the difference as compared to the 2007. Vintage does matter! We decided to save those last three 2007 bottles for future vintage throwdowns and 2007 vs. 2013 will be our last.
In the glass, we notice that the color of the 2007 has slightly more brick coloration than the bright ruby hue of the 2013. The wines we usually buy don’t age well past 8 or 9 years, so we take the change in color as a sign to finish up a vintage.
The nose is where the 2007 and 2013 differ most. In the 2007, vanilla dominates and is supported by dried herbs and blackberry fruit. The 2013 is more fruit forward with notes of coffee and fresh herbs.
Both the 2007 and 2013 are full of cherry, blackberry and currants on the palate. The fruits in the 2013 taste brighter and fresher, whereas in the 2007, the fruits are drier. It’s like the difference between a plum and a prune. The vanilla nose in the 2007 follows through on the palate, while the 2013 adds hints of dark chocolate and anise. The mouthfeel of the 2007 is smooth and mellow while the 2013 is edgier with higher acidity.
Both vintages have a nice medium-long finish but the 2007 wins by a hair. It has a roundness and lingering touch of fruity sweetness at the end that the 2013 misses.
The vanilla-heavy quality of the 2007 was something we really liked that was not as present in subsequent vintages. Overall, we still enjoy Simi Cab on a regular basis and it’s usually easy to find in retail stores and in restaurants. Definitely a plus when you’re traveling or selecting a wine from an intimidating wine menu.