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What To Drink Now: Cabernet Sauvignon

Every day I get a press release on a new holiday to celebrate one thing or another, and though some do strike me as a little odd (Happy Tofu Day….Happy Pina Colada Day) today is one that I will raise my glass high to….today is Cabernet Sauvignon Day. Celebrate this palate pleasing day with one of these tasty Cabs and Cab blends.
Some selections were sent for editorial consideration.

Many people know Chalk Hill Winery in Sonoma, CA for their lush Chardonnay and steely Sauvignon Blanc, but one of the apples of Bill Foley’s eye in his Foley Family Wines portfolio creates an equally as beautiful Cabernet Sauvignon from fruit grown on the sustainably farmed estate in Healdsburg.  Their Chalk Hill Estate Red blends Cabernet with Malbec, Merlot, Petit Verdot and a touch of Carmenere and Syrah for a true representation of the land.  Bold and intense, yet nicely balanced, this is a wine to enjoy now or let age for several years; if you do enjoy it now open it a few hours before drinking or decant it to allow some aeration of the wine.  

Another winery in Foley’s family is Kuleto.  Located in the heart of Napa Valley 1500 feet above Lake Hennessey, Kuleto is an relaxing wine country oasis, which also produces beautiful wine from their estate fruit made up of 82 different vineyard blocks.  The Kuleto Frog Prince Cabernet layers dark fruit with tobacco, leather and herbal notes adding earthy characteristics to this highly concentrated red wine.  Big and bold, this is best enjoyed with a hearty steak or braised meat.  David Lattin, winemaker for Kuleto will participate in a live tasting tonight at 8pm via video chat or Twitter.  Email socialmedia@foleyfamilywines.com to register a spot or follow Twitter @KuletoEstate #CabDayKul.

Chris Figgins of Leonetti & Figgins Family Wine Estate

If you had a chance to visit TEXSOM this year you may have enjoyed one of the incredible Leonetti wines during the interactive discussion with President/Winemaking Director Chris Figgins.  Many would say Leonetti is the pinnacle wine for Washington, and I will agree, but will also take this a step further and say that everything Chris seems to be doing is spot on, as is evident with his Figgins Family Wine Estates Red Wine, blending Cabernet Sauvignon with Petit Verdot and Merlot for the ultimate expression of quality, character and elegance, showing just how fantastic wine from Walla Walla is.  Though highly allocated, similar to the Leonetti, every now and then a bottle will appear on a wine list, and if it does…buy it.  You can also sign up to be added to the Figgins list via their website.

Gorman Winery is another winery from Washington that is making a name for itself for their high quality blends sourced from prime vineyards located in the eastern half of the state, but made in Woodinville, just outside of Seattle.  Begun over 20 years ago Gorman Owner/Winemaker Chris Gorman marries whimsy with quality in everything he does.  His Bully Red blends 85% Cabernet Sauvigon with 15% Petit Verdot from Washington’s Red Mountain AVA, aged 21 months in 100% new French oak, to create a powerful, rich and dense wine filled with dark chocolate, licorice, leather, ripe cherry and spice notes.

Friends Dr. Mary Rocca and Dr. Eric Grisby started Rocca Family Vineyards in 1999 after purchasing their first vineyard in Yountville, followed shortly thereafter by their Coombsville Vineyard.  Though both distinct, as the terroir does change dramatically as you travel from one end of Napa Valley to the other, each maintains the excellent quality that anything with Mary’s name on it will maintain.  Their Grigsby Vineyard Cabernet from Yountville embraces the traditional flavors area, just on the edge of Stag’s Leap and filled with concentrated layers of blackberry, black cherry, fresh herbs and licorice.  Unfined and unfiltered, with a velvety texture and a long finish.

Also creating unfiltered wine on Spring Mountain in Napa is Newton Vineyard.  One of the most beautiful vineyards in the valley, overlooking the city of St. Helena, Newton embraces sustainability as a way of life, not something especially extraordinary.  The Newton Unfiltered Cabernet Sauvignon comes from various, hand-picked vineyard blocks scattered throughout the 120 acres of vines, blended to create the perfect balance and optimal flavor profile, filled with black plum, dark chocolate, herbal earthy notes.

A solid go to wine for decades has been Jordan Winery in Alexander Valley.  Reliably consistent, you know what you are going to get when you open a bottle of Jordan, either with their classic California Chardonnay or their Cab.  Celebrating their 40th anniversary this year the family owned winery has maintained the focus of crafting quality wine from sustainably farmed vineyards, with the flavors fo the land coming through in each glass.  Made predominantly of Cabernet with 18% Merlot and 5% Petit Verdot added to the blend to help round out the black plum, cherry and spice filled wine.

Also celebrating 40 years in 2012 is Silver Oak, and if you are a lover of Silver Oak it is hard to stray to something different as the style, texture, bold flavor profile and smooth texture of a Silver Oak Cabernet Sauvignon stands the test of time.  I am particularly fond of the Napa Valley Silver Oak, filled with dark cherry, chocolate and coffee notes, pairing beautifully with anything from brisket to burgers.

Potentially one of the best wines I have had recently from Napa Valley came from the winery of the gracious Houston based cardiologist, Dr. Revana.  I was in Willamette Valley tasting Pinot Noir at Alexana, the sister winery to Napa’s Revana and lucky for me, got a taste of the gorgeous Revana Cabernet Sauvingon originally made by the legendary Heidi Barrett, and now by winemaker Thomas Brown, Food & Wine Magazine Winemaker of the Year in 2010.  Lush, elegant, refined and distinct, a wine you sip and savor.

NFL football player Charles Woodson launched TwentyFour Wines as an endeavor to celebrate gorgeous Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon while giving back and paying forward. Woodson appreciated the fact that wine always seemed to bring people together, whether it was for a fancy dinner or low-key lunch, and it seemed to slow people down from the hustle of normal life.  TwentyFour Cabernet Sauvignon, named for Charles’ number when he played for the Oakland Raiders, made from Calistoga fruit, is filled with opulent ripe fruit flavors of blackberry, blueberry and plum with subtle layers of vanilla, mocha and pepper.  In the idea of giving back, $10 of every bottle of wine sold is donated to CS Mott Children’s Hospital & Von Voightlander Women’s Hospital in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

3 comments on “What To Drink Now: Cabernet Sauvignon

  1. “What To Drink Now – Cabernet Sauvignon” In late August in Dallas, Texas? In 100 degree heat? Coupled with crazy humidity due to all the tropical storms? With so many great light(er) reds and seasonally appropriate whites? Jordan Cab? Not at all being a “troll” (simply stating my opinion) but you’d almost be as current pubbing ‘Hot Toddy’s’this time of year in Texas. This is why I feel we are at least a decade behind NYC, LA, Spain — even behind Austin!

  2. Wine-O: We were just in Houston a couple of weeks ago- and yeah- it is HOT in Texas- IF you are outdoors.
    But, since 99% of the folks there spend 99% of their time inside in air-conditioning, where you need a sweater,
    Cab is actually great with dinner!

    Nice article Hayley!