On Q is a micro-production winery from Napa Valley’s Coombsville sub-appellation. Their wines have earned as high as 96 points from Robert Parker, with the ‘Cadence’ (re-named Improvisation’ in its 2017 vintage) ranked as a top 1% cabernet worldwide over hundreds of online reviews.
Deep, almost dark as night, yet luminescent ruby in the glass, with intimately appealing inky violet highlights. A drop-dead gorgeous nose emerges as it breathes, dark red and purple fruits, spice, smoke, lavender all jump from the glass. Sip after sip, it reveals a sexy, nuanced and utterly stunning side, with an expressive, seamless mouthfeel and polished tannins. A majestic, textured, creamy finish rounds out this exuberant Cabernet combining richness with grace. While the richest of beef preparations come to mind first, it has the depth to enhance any bold dish.
Currently, Maayan Koschitzky oversees Philippe Melka’s fabled consulting collective Atelier Melka as Partner and Director of Winemaking. Prior to his stint at Screaming Eagle, Koschitzky honed his sorcery at Dalla Valle, yet another crown-jewel of Napa Valley. His flashy style never compromises balance and finesse, which remains clearly evident at all price points. This wine exemplifies the common denominator of all his work, an irresistible deliciousness, eminently a “cult” Cabernet feel with unmatched depth and resonance. Cadence in musical terms means “a sequence of notes or chords comprising the close of a musical phrase” and this showstopper will long echo on your palate, enticing to pull the cork of a next bottle.
Koschitzky’s time at Screaming Eagle forever changed how he thought about wine making. They had a unique philosophy. They never cut corners. They never dropped standards. Only exceptional fruit from the best vineyards would make the cut. He now brings this philosophy to On Q which you can experience with this Cabernet Sauvignon –Improvisation.
The “Improvisation” displays an entirely opaque, dark purple-black core with hints of magenta on the rim. The nose is enticing and powerful, showing off intoxicating liqueur notes of créme de cassis and kirsch, alongside ripe black cherry, blackberries, fresh-picked violets, cacao, baking spices, vanilla and coffee bean, tobacco leaf, and crushed stones. The palate is full-bodied and mouth-coating with immense layers of dark fruit that are unabashedly rich and ripe. All this, however, is proportionately balanced by waves of persisting freshness and a touch of acidity that keeps it from entering a sappy/cloying territory that many “Cult Cabs” can’t seem to shake.
As with many modern Cabernets, this forward style will drink at its finest over the next 5-7 years with proper storage, but it is delicious right now and needs no further aging to enjoy. Proper service temperature is crucial for this wine. For optimal results, enjoy around 60-65 degrees in Bordeaux stems after 30-60 minutes in a decanter. This serious, full-bodied beauty is ideal with a medium-rare steak.
The Improvisation Cabernet from On Q is still flying under the radar. We expect it to sell out once the words gets out. If you wait, the prices will go up.