2007 Joel Gott 815 Cabernet Sauvignon: Spicy, and probably needs to breathe.

july 3, 2009: the fireworks are booming, the dogs are energized, and here victoria sits with her first glass of joel gott cab. she'd rather enjoy a quiet night at home after a long day at work, but this is the fourth of july weekend, after all; environmental madness is the only option available. luckily, this californian cab meets the crazed festivities halfway. with its spicy finish, it's not too heavy to be burdensome on a hot summer night. but neither is it so flavorful that it balks at any thoughts beyond it. so ... our new 7-week-old daschund puppy shelby has found her bark, and against our 40-pound shepherd mix, that's quite an accomplishment. luckily there's an end to this latest of american revolutions. now they sit, quietly, as jelly roll morton plays in the background. there's a reason for the fireworks after all, especially with a napa valley cab sourced from the mendocino coast, paso robles and lake county. 14.3 percent alcohol. $17.59 at winetree.

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