Malbec is by far the darling, the apple of the eye, the brightest star in the sky right now for Argentina, however viticulturalists are finally learning to manage the, at times, cantankerous Cabernet Sauvignon. Coming from Napa, I have a distinctly California palate for Cabernet so my expectations are pretty high.
Over the last three years that I have lived in Mendoza, I have seen the quality of Cabernet exponentiate and I think that has to do in large part the international influence that winemakers have had on the local wine industry. While local winemakers and agronomists were comfortable with Malbec, how to grow and process it, the Cabernet needed to have a different regime, longer growing time in the vineyard, careful development of tannins and acid and subtle winemaking differences in the winery. Whereas before I often tasted very green and lean Cabernet's ( I HATE green flavors in wines) they are now rounding out with lush fruit, balanced tannins and spicy notes in the mouth. Also I have learned to appreciate the finer essence of green pepper through Cabernet Franc which, here in Mendoza, is actually very interesting with silky tannins, and lots of fruit to accent the typical green flavor profile of the historically Bordeaux blending varietal.
Mariana and I taste through all the wines that we have in the tasting room and online store through blind tastings, so we are often able to offer a lovely balance between a North and South American palate and we even came to a consensus, which is not always the case, to carry these amazing Cab's
Check out The Vines of Mendoza selections at our online store- they will give any California Cab a run for the money- especially at these prices!
This month we are profiling the 12 that we selected of this super interesting varietal in our Case of Cab for Cab Lovers. Here are the wines that are available- mix and match or try the entire case:
Gimenez Riili Cabernet Sauvignon Mendoza 2005 $9 The flavors keep coming and coming in this Argentine classic.
Lorca Poético Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 $14 Unique, balanced, and earthy, with lots of personality.
Las Perdices Cabernet Sauvignon Mendoza 2006 $16 A perfect Cabernet for a big yummy steak!
Doña Elvira Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon Mendoza 2005 $19 This is a wine to enjoy after a long day of work, not another worry to be had.
Las Loicas Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon Mendoza 2006 $22 This organic wine exudes old world sensations and structure.
Maia Cabernet Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 $22 Soft and subtle, with chocolate and caramel to excite you.
SinFin Guarda Cabernet Sauvignon Mendoza 2005 $24 Luscious and intricate, it evokes the sensation of long silky hair tossing in the breeze.
Cavas de Crianza Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 $26 One of Argentina's most award-winning wines!
Proemio Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon Mendoza 2003 $29 This wine is reminiscent of a rugged cowboy- lean but with character.
Carmelo Patti Cabernet Sauvignon Mendoza 2002 $32 Carmelo Patti takes the term “handcrafting” to another level.
Otello Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon Mendoza 2006 $35 Elegant and rich, a perfectly balanced Cabernet.
And the Ringer- Ricominciare Blend - Cabernet Franc / Cabernet sauvignon 2006$26 Filled with bright red cherry, freshly cut grass and a hint of red and green pepper.