This is the fourth in our exciting series of grape variety tastings showcasing examples across the world. On this evening, we will be tasting eight fantastic expressions of Cabernet Sauvignon with examples from France and from further afield including South Africa, New Zealand, Australia, California, and Chile.
This grape is without question the most popular grape variety in the world, but you wouldn't have guessed that it is native to the Aquitaine, France where it is a child of Cabernet Franc (r) and Sauvignon Blanc (w). Now at home in the Gironde it produces some of the greatest wines in the world.
Today's wine drinkers can find many Cabernet Sauvignon options on the market ranging from wines that are honest and fruity, whilst others can be complex, minerally, herbal, oaky, savoury and even smoky. It all depends on where it's grown and how it’s made.
Although Cabernet Sauvignon can perform well in cool climates, if it’s too cold, the wines may take on more stalky or herbaceous notes, such as green leaf and capsicum. These characters can leave the wine tasting green and ‘stalky’. In hot regions, the fruit characters become less defined but are still useful in commercial blends; they often add tannins to bring more structure to wines made from other high-cropping vines but if the grape is exposed to excess warmth and becomes over-ripened, the wine can develop flavours of cooked or stewed blackcurrants.
Cabernet as a strong affinity for oak so it’s common to find flavours of vanilla, coconut, clove, cardamon, cinnamon & nutmeg. With age Cabernet Sauvignon can also take on other characteristics such as forest floor, coffee, cigar box and tobacco.
Wines on Tasting:*
- Vina Ventisquero Queulat Cabernet Sauvignon, Maipo Valley, Chile
- Te Mata Cabernets Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand
- Vasse Felix Cabernet Sauvignon Margaret River, Australia,
- Pauillac / Margaux, Bordeaux, France
- Chateau Loudenne, Cru Bourgeois, Haut Medoc, France
- Patrick ‘Home Block’ Cabernet Sauvignon, Coonawarra, Australia
- Meerlust Cabernet Sauvignon Stellenbosch, South Africa
- Freemark Abbey Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley, USA
Note - due to stock or vintage changes some wines may be substituted. This list is indicative of what may be on offer*