The first time I had the Buehler Vineyards Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon was the 2001 vintage, an excellent year for Napa Cabs. Wine Spectator gave the 2001 Buehler 91 points, and said it would drink until 2012. Our case is long gone, so I can neither confirm nor deny this prediction. I remember it as a solid wine — not on par with some of my favorite reasonably priced cabs like Chappellet and Whitehall Lane, but very enjoyable just the same.
Buehler is a relatively small producer — typical production is only a couple thousand cases. And so, for whatever reasons, I just haven’t come across it since. Then about a week ago I received an email that the 2008, another great California Cab vintage, was on special at WineShopper for $15.99. In August 2011, Robert Parker gave it 90 points:
A real steal and one of the greatest sleepers I have tasted from Napa (the Mecca for expensive Cabernet Sauvignons) is Buehler’s 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon from their vineyards in Napa Valley. There are only 1,800 cases of this 100% Cabernet Sauvignon, so this offering is likely to disappear quickly from the marketplace. It offers a dark ruby/purple-tinged color, abundant black currant, licorice and smoky tobacco leaf characteristics, medium to full body, a supple, velvety style and impressive purity, texture and length. Consume it over the next 10+ years.
As I recall I paid more than $16 ten years ago! So I figured I’d pick up half a case and re-acquaint myself. All I can say is wow! This is a terrific wine for the money. I should have bought a case. If you can find some, give it a try.