Friday, August 29, 2014

Cabernet Day, Eh?

So, the last Thursday in August arrived and so did International Cabernet Day.

Not that we ever need an excuse to determine which bottle to open but it seemed appropriate to open a Sonoma Valley Cab to show a little solidarity for the Napa/Sonoma/San Fran region after it experienced that 6.1 earthquake last weekend.

1726.  2005 Chateau St. Jean Cinq Cépages Cabernet Sauvignon (Sonoma Country - California)

So, edging toward the century mark in Canadian dollars, this isn't your standard weeknight bottle - at least not my standard weeknight bottle.  It's just that we don't have many (if any) entry level Napa or Sonoma Cab's lying around our home. Luckily, that just meant we got to enjoy a bit of a splurge.

The label might call this a Cab Sauv but Cinq Cépages is actually a full Bordeaux blend or Meritage. The "Cinq" in the name is, of course, French for "five" and the wine is a blend of the five varieties that are standardly drawn from to make a Bordeaux-styled red wine. The blend is predominantly Cab Sauv though - with Merlot, Cab Franc, Petit Verdot and Malbec merely playing supporting roles here.

There's a good reason why Napa and Sonoma Cabs have the reputation that they do. With a bit of age behind it, the bottle was showing a good degree of integration. It still had a nice bouquet, with dark fruit that was clearly present but not over the top, and there was a good balance with a strong backbone of tannin.

The wine wasn't overpowering in the least (as a good percentage of Cabs from the region can be) and it paired deliciously with the chorizo we grilled for dinner. Granted, the Caesar salad didn't exactly embellish the wine's finer points but that just meant we could finish off the salad without wine and keep our glasses full for the balance of the evening - if only it were that easy to keep our glasses full for an evening with only one bottle of wine.

These international wine varietal days are kind of hokey but, hey, if they give me a "reason" to pull the cork on beauties like this, bring 'em on.

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