One of two "noble" red varieties. More often than not deep, garnet
red in color, often with an herbaceous and green-olive aroma and
flavor, tannic (astringent) in taste and dry.
While California's warm climate ripens Cabernet with very consistent results, Bordeaux's
marginal climate forces it to be planted in the Medoc region, near
the more temperate Atlantic coast.
Cabernet can be aged for many
years and often benefits greatly from it.
fastest growing grape in the country. The heavyweights come from
South and Southeast Australia, but the grape is grown everywhere.
From simple quaffing wines to huge, chewy California-clones, Australia
may one day boast more Cabernet than Syrah.
lighter, simpler offerings (usually from the cooler areas in Mendocino
and the Central Coast) all the way up to the dense giants of Napa
and Sonoma, this grape dominates the red wine scene.
is a very adaptable grape. Its style can vary depending on the winemaker.
The best can be enjoyable when young or need 5-10 years of age to
mellow out. It ripens fully nearly every year in Napa and Sonoma
where by far the best examples are produced.
Only Washington competes with California in Cabernet Sauvignon prowess.
The warm and dry Columbia Valley harbors a perfect set of conditions
and one that event bests California, a longer growing season.
has the potential to make the most Bordeaux-like wines in the country
because of it. A few impressive examples have come from Oregon's
Rogue Valley and New York's eastern end of Long Island
for less than 20% of the plantings in Bordeaux, most of that in
the village of Pauillac. Almost always blended with Merlot and/or
Cabernet Franc except in very few cases where it makes up over 90%
of the blend as with Chateau Latour and Chateau Lafite. In great
vintages, the wine can live for 100 years. Increasing in Provence
where it makes good, everyday drinking wine.
of the Cabernet Sauvignon is grown in the northeast, specifically
Trentino, Friuli and the Veneto. They generally tend to offer light,
simple quaffing wines for early consumption. Many estates in Tuscany,
however, have embraced this French transplant and turning out impressive
offerings rivaling Bordeaux and California. It has also been used
quite effectively in blends with Chianti's own Sangiovese as well
as the typical Bordeaux blend with Merlot and Cabernet Franc.
in fairly large quantities, but the South African preference for
red wines with high astringency runs counter to the tastes of the
rest of the world. Thusly, with few exceptions, their reds have
only sold in their own country. A few outstanding examples exist,
however, and hopefully they will continue to be produced.
dominates in the Cabernet Sauvignon field in South America. Most
are easy drinking, but there are a few standouts. Continuing investment
by prestigious wine firms across the globe will change that in the