Saturday is Cabernet Day
|Cabernet Sauvignon accounts for nearly 65% of the vines planted in the Margaux appellation. “It gives wine structure, bouquet, and a potential to age.”|
The related Cabernets, Franc and Sauvignon, celebrate their day this coming Saturday (September 3rd).
Cabernet Sauvignon is the most famous red wine grape. It is highly adaptable, will grow in different climates and soils. So expect good quality examples from many countries, especially from France (mainly Bordeaux), USA (California), Australia (below) and Chile (Cono Sur’s Silencio is a prime example, if an expensive one). Good Cabernet Sauvignon can pop in from anywhere, including from Craggy Range in New Zealand and Ernie Els in South Africa.
It is also a very well-known variety so its name on a bottle means that the customer has a familiarity with it and that gives the marketing people an immediate edge. No wonder it sells well in so many countries.
But you still have to be careful. It is a high-yielding vine and that means producers can go for quantity over quality! So the words Cabernet Sauvignon on the label are not a guarantee of a good bottle. The two below though are good!
Cabernet Sauvignon originated in Bordeaux and is grown all around the region, invariably blended (though there is no universal formula for the mix). Regular blend partners are Merlot and Cabernet Franc and sometimes a little Petit Verdot is added.
DNA profiling (should we all get it done? Maybe not!) has confirmed Cabernet Franc is the daddy of Cabernet Sauvignon and that Sauvignon Blanc is the mammy.
Tahbilk Cabernet Sauvignon 2012, Victoria (AUS), 13.5%, €18.25 Wines Direct
For decades now, Australian has been associated with top class Cabernet Sauvignon. Margaret River in the west has outstanding examples. Our excellent example comes from the east, from the Nagambie Lakes region of central Victoria, one of the nation’s premier viticultural areas. Since 2012, Tahbilk Winery has been certified Carbon Neutral.
Nothing neutral about this violet beauty though. Blackcurrants, and some spice, feature in the pleasant aromas. Some serious flavours on a well rounded palate, tannins are fine and the finish is good. A excellent example indeed and Very Highly Recommended.
Lalaurie T’Wines Cabernet Sauvignon - Syrah, Pays d’Oc (IGT), 2015, 13.5%, €11.75 Wines Direct
Once upon a time, according to Grapes and Wine (2015), the classic Bordeaux blend included Syrah. This blend is very popular nowadays in Australia but the one we’ve got comes from much nearer home, from the Languedoc.
Bit wary of these funny wine names, this one coming because the two leading women in the winery are twins (and one is a marketing expert!). But I needn’t have worried. This is a very engaging wine and good value to boot.
It has a bright ruby colour and the aromas are mainly of blackcurrant. It is very approachable, medium bodied, well balanced between fruit and acidity, minimum tannin presence. Not the longest but a decent finish nonetheless. Easy drinking and easy to Recommend!