Screaming Eagle   Screaming Eagle

1992 Screaming Eagle

By Screaming Eagle

1992 Screaming Eagle from Screaming Eagle, Napa Valley, USA

An undisputed icon in the world of American viniculture, the 1992 Screaming Eagle from Screaming Eagle stands as a testament to the staggering potential of the Napa Valley. The 1992 vintage of this fine wine from USA came at a time when Screaming Eagle was still finding its footing as an ultra-premium producer, yet this particular release showcases a wine producer in full flight.


The allure of 1992's unique blend

Since its inception, this estate has been revered for its remarkable Cabernet Sauvignon, and the 1992 Screaming Eagle is no exception. Despite its impressive age, what sets it apart is its vibrant youthfulness. Predominantly Cabernet Sauvignon, with petite touches of Merlot and Cabernet Franc, the cool growing season of '92 bolstered acid profiles and offered a restrained fruit character that continues to evolve on the palate.

Bright blackcurrant notes juxtapose more savoury nuances like sage and truffle, all bound together by an elegantly firm tannic structure. The balance is exquisite: a sign of things to come from Screaming Eagle.


A significant vintage for investment

From an investor's viewpoint, the appeal of the 1992 Screaming Eagle lies not only in its distinction as a truly exemplary vintage but also in its rarity. Fewer than 200 cases were produced. Being integral to any serious collector's portfolio dedicated to fine wines from USA, this wine's values have climbed steadily over recent years — a trend that is projected to uphold due to increasing scarcity.

Pouring the 1992 Screaming Eagle from Screaming Eagle is not merely about tasting a fine wine. It's an exploration of Napa Valley's viticultural history, a privy to a time when a new player just began to soar. This exquisite wine serves as both a testament to Screaming Eagle's humble beginnings and the dizzying heights it would later achieve.

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Scores and tasting notes


This small operation is located just below the Dalla Valle vineyard near the Oakville Cross. Screaming Eagle's Cabernet Sauvignons are going to create quite a stir among lovers of that varietal - if they are able to latch onto a bottle or two. The estate is owned by Tony Bowden and Jean Phillips, one of Napa Valley's leading real estate agents. With the help of Heidi Barrett and Gustav Dalla Valle, this operation's debut vintage is the extraordinary 1992 Cabernet Sauvignon, one of the greatest young Cabernets I have ever tasted. The wine is bottled unfined and unfiltered, and aged in 60% new oak. It is only sold via a mailing list, so readers who want to taste one of the most exciting young wines being produced should get on the list. The 175 cases of the 1992 are followed by only 130 cases of the 1993, and a tiny quantity of 1994, as the last two vintages were even smaller in crop size. At present, the 1992 can be bought at the following Napa Valley locations: the restaurants Don Giovanni and Brava, and at the St. Helena Wine Center and Oakville Grocery. Don't dilly-dally around on this one. The 1992 Screaming Eagle Cabernet Sauvignon is exceptionally impressive. The wine's opaque purple color is followed by a sensational nose of jammy blackcurrants and subtle toasty oak. As stunning as the aromatics are, the wine reveals even greater richness and intensity on the palate, offering up layers of stunningly proportioned, ripe, intense fruit, full body, great purity, and an inner-core of sweet, creamy, highly extracted blackcurrant/cassis fruit. The tannin is nearly concealed behind the massive extract and richness. All the component parts are brilliantly focused and in balance. The finish is awesome! This is a spectacular debut release that should age effortlessly for 20 years. Screaming Eagle is one of the most exciting new wineries in California. Address: Screaming Eagle Winery and Vineyard, P.O. Box 134, Oakville, CA 94562; tel. (707) 944-0749

Robert Parker Jr - The Wine Advocate, 22 December 1995

Vintage performance