Le Tour de Cabernet

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Reported by Guild Director Marie-France Champagne

It was a full house for Le Tour de Cabernet tasting led by Guild director Robert White.

We started with the Forest Hill Estate Cabernet Sauvignon, a family owned boutique winery located on Mount Barker in Southern Australia. Those who preferred it liked the aroma profile, the balance and the fairly high acid level. What a great value the second wine was! At $18.95, the Maipe Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon from Argentina is a steal. A mix of bright fruit and tertiary aromas on the nose, great balance and tannins integrating nicely. The following wine was also quite popular. Reminiscent of Old World, complex, the Megalomaniac Grounded Cabernet Sauvignon surprised many of us. Finishing the first flight and unfortunately not overly well received was the Stag’s Leap Artemis Cabernet Sauvignon, the most expensive wine of the flight at $59.95.

Starting the second flight was Mitolo Serpico, the favourite of the flight. This Australian Cabernet Sauvignon was treated Appassimento style, intensifying it’s flavour profile. Off to Italy with the Maestro Raro Cabernet Sauvignon. This wine had gotten rave reviews from wine critic Antonio Galloni but failed to impressed Guild members. The following two wines, both from Chile, were equally liked. The Don Melchor from Concha Y Toro, was a blend of 90% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Cabernet Franc and small amounts of Merlot and Petit Verdot. The Cousino-Macul Lota from the 2007 vintage had a lot to offer. This 85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot blend had a beautiful nose and a long smooth finish.

First wine on the final flight was the Ridge Estate Cabernet Sauvignon. This 80% Cabertnet, 17% Merlot, Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc was ranked #30 on Decanter magazine’s Top 50 Wines of 2013. It had perceived sweetness on both the nose and the palate, lovely texture, full body. It was a tough act to follow for the Cade Cabernet Sauvignon, which could have used a few more years in the bottle. It was the least popular wine of this flight. The Beringer Private Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon was a hit. Approachable, loads of ripe fruit, vanilla, sweet spice, a definite crowd pleaser. Finishing the tasting beautifully, the Freemark Abbey Bosché Cabernet Sauvignon was the favourite of the flight. Complex, balanced and beautiful.

Flight #1

  • Forest Hill Estate Cabernet Sauvignon, 2010, Western Australia, $32.95
  • Maipe Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, 2012, Mendoza, Argentina, $18.95
  • Megalomaniac Grounded Cabernet Sauvignon, 2010, Niagara, Canada, $44.95
  • Stag’s Leap Artemis Cabernet Sauvignon, 2010, Napa Valley, California, $59.95

Flight #2

  • Mitolo Serpico Cabernet Sauvignon, 2009, South Australia, $52.95
  • Maestro Raro Cabernet Sauvignon, 2008, Tuscany, Italy, $64.00
  • Concha y Toro Don Melchor Cabernet Sauvignon, 2008, Maipo Valley,Chile, $79.95
  • Cousino-Macul Lota Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot, 2007, Maipo Valley, Chile, $87.00

Flight #3

  • Ridge Estate Cabernet Sauvignon, 2010, Santa Cruz Mountains, California, $61.95
  • Cade Cabernet Sauvignon, 2010, Napa Valley, California, $99.95
  • Beringer Private Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, 2010, Napa Valley, California, $149.95
  • Freemark Abbey Bosche Cabernet Sauvignon, 2006, Rutherford, California, $109.00