Colgin Cellars - Wines - Vintages


1999 "Cariad"

The 1999 "Cariad" marks Colgin's first-ever bottling of a Bordeaux Style Blend. This "Cariad" is a blend of 55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc, all from David Abreu's Madrona Ranch Vineyard and 5% Petit Verdot from Abreu's Thorevilos Vineyard, both in St. Helena. The word "cariad" means love in Welsh. Ann Colgin discovered this word after the wedding invitations for Catherine Zeta-Jones (a native of Wales) and Michael Douglas' nuptials were sent with the words "love" and "cariad" engraved on each side. The wine is hedonistic in its complexity.

Notes from the Estate:

A powerful nose of plum, black fruit, gravel, scorched earth, black pepper and smoky meats make this wine off the charts. Intense, yet soft, fruit tannins give this wine a very supple texture. Drink now through 2020. Service: Serve straight from the bottle, with care to avoid stirring up the precipitates.

The color is dark and saturating with a surprising clarity for an unfined, unfiltered wine produced in the Bordeaux style. This wine embodies that structure that has become the hallmark of Colgin wines: bright jammy fruit aromas and character combined with soft ripe tannins. Strong black cherry and raspberry aromas lead into a beautifully balanced wine experience featuring fresh blueberry jam and an earthy freshness reminiscent of some of the finest wines from the Paulliac region of Bordeaux. A hint of slightly sweet tobacco leaf comes through in the background due to the 26 months this wine spent in the 100% new Taransaud barrels. The inaugural release of this wine offers a seductive experience now while the long, silky finish reflects a sublime balance between this rich oak and the focused structure of the tannins that will age beautifully for at least two decades.

We released 450 cases of 1999 Colgin "Cariad" in November 2002.


Review by Robert Parker
Wine Advocate #142 (Aug 2002)
Rating: 91 points
Drink 2006-2018
Estimated Cost: $165.00


The 1999 "Cariad" (450 cases) is a Bordeaux-like blend of 55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc, and 5% Petit Verdot that could easily pass for a high-class Medoc. It offers a complex nose of cedar, spice box, minerals, currants, and loamy soil, with well-integrated sweet oak, a layered texture, wonderful elegance, sweet fruit, and terrific length. It is hard to believe this wine was aged in 100% new Taransaud barrels as their influence is subtle. The vintage's austerity is evident in the wine's finish, so 3-4 years of cellaring is suggested. Anticipated maturity: 2006-2018.

Colgin's new proprietary red wine offering (which I referred to as Madrona Ranch in issue #132 of The Wine Advocate) has been officially named "Cariad" (Welsh for "love"). The fruit for this cuvee comes from Madrona Ranch, located in the northwestern corner of St. Helena. The only exception is a tiny amount of Petit Verdot (ranging from 5%-7% in the final blend) that emerges from a vineyard owned by David Abreu and Ric Foreman called Thorevilos.

Colgin, which is already a so-called "cult" wine, seems to have pushed the envelope of quality even higher ... as hard as that is to believe. As always, the truth is in the bottle ... in vino veritas.

(Release date 11/02)

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Cariad, Red Wine