A Rising Napa Star with Hungarian Roots

A Rising Napa Star with Hungarian Roots

Lou Kapcsandy fled Budapest after the Soviets crushed the 1956 revolt, heading with four companions for the Austrian border. Only he and one other survived. Eventually, Kapcsandy (pronounced "cap-chandy") made his way to the U.S. and earned his fortune as head of a large general contracting company in Seattle. Four years ago he moved to the Napa Valley to pursue his retirement dream, the Kapcsandy Family Winery, which he runs with his wife, Bobbie, and son, Louis. This winery is definitely one of Napa's next superstars. If you're interested in these Bordeaux-like wines, I recommend getting on the mailing list by signing up at kapscandywines.com or calling the winery (707 948-3100).

90 POINTS2003 Proprietary Red Wine State Lane VineyardThis debut vintage—90% cabernet sauvignon and 10% merlot—comes across as a dark ruby-colored, medium-bodied, floral-infused effort with plenty of fruit, good aromatic complexity, and a fine finish. It should drink well for 10 to 15 years. Availability is limited since the winery produced just 200 cases. $90

91 POINTS2005 Estate Cuvée State Lane VineyardA blend of 51% cabernet, 46% merlot, and 3% cabernet franc, the wine exhibits a dark plum-purple hue. The aromas and flavors are of charcoal, chocolate, blueberries, black currants, loam, minerals, and flowers. It should drink nicely for 10 to 15 years. Only 1,400 cases were made. $105

95 POINTS2004 Proprietary Red Wine State Lane VineyardLovely, evolved aromas of blueberries, black currants, white chocolate, licorice, and pain grillé rise up from the wine. Medium to full-bodied, this 60/40 blend of cabernet sauvignon and merlot is impeccably balanced and should develop for another 15 to 20 years. $90

95 POINTS2005 Roberta's Reserve State Lane VineyardCompletely different from its siblings, this wine is 91% merlot and 9% cabernet franc. It reveals plenty of berry fruit interwoven with notions of charcoal, mocha, and coffee. Rich, medium- to full-bodied, and long in the finish, it possesses an overriding elegance that is reminiscent of a great Bordeaux. It will be even better after several years of bottle aging and should keep for 12 to 15 years. $140

96 POINTS2005 Cabernet Sauvignon State Lane VineyardThis wine will remind you of a premium Bordeaux. Copious amounts of black currants, graphite, cedar, spices, and toasty, smoky oak emerge from this opaque purple, rich, full-bodied, cab. It demonstrates what a passionate proprietor can achieve in a short time with good raw materials and the right winemaking team. Anticipated maturity: 2009-2020+. $150

Wines rated from 96-100 are extraordinary; 90-95, excellent; 80-89, above average to very good

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