Written by John Kerr of Metro Wines
A guide to the best values in premium Napa Cabernet
Who doesn’t love Cabernet Sauvignon? You’ll find it in vineyards in nearly every major wine region. Countries with obscure grapes often blend in Cabernet to boost the sales of their local product. It is the world’s most planted grape. And it’s so delicious that even the bad ones taste pretty good. This is a wine that needs no introduction.
What makes Cabernet taste so good? Besides its great flavor, it is an unbeatable combination of the attributes that just about everyone enjoys. Above all it is a full-bodied wine. Its thick skin kicks out notes of black cherry, cedar, baking spices, and graphite. The grape generates a wine with medium acidity. Just enough acid to add a good backbone to the wine, but not so much to chase off anyone.
Cab also pairs with the kinds of foods that most of us love. Its rich flavors and high tannins make it a perfect partner to aged cheeses, red meats, savory sauces, and bold dishes like grilled foods. Along with Tannat and Nebbiolo, the Barolo grape, Cabernet is among the most tannic grapes in the world. Tannins are one driver of a wine’s ageability, giving the best of Cabs a life of ten or more years to evolve.
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