One might call the opaque purple-colored 2001 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate “locked and loaded.” Fashioned from a blend of 96% Cabernet Sauvignon and 4% Cabernet Franc (which saw about 25% new oak), it exhibits a tremendously pure, but tightly-knit bouquet of creme de cassis, leather, forest floor, minerals, and licorice. Dense, with layer upon layer of concentrated black fruits intermixed with spice and wood, it displays full body, great purity, low acidity, and a solid lashing of heavy duty tannin in the blockbuster finish. It’s great stuff, clearly the finest Montelena Cabernet Sauvignon since 1997, but patience will be essential. Anticipated maturity: 2009-2030. Robert Parker 96 pts.