Cabernet Sauvignon Around the World

Cabernet Sauvignon from around the world was the subject of our Thursday night tasting this week. We had wine from Australia, Chile, France, Italy, South Africa and the United States. With this much geographic variety involved, I expected there to be some very significant differences among these wines. However, even with the differences they all exhibited, there were a lot of similarities and they tasted true to the varietal. Sometimes when we taste wine from different areas of the world, or even the USA, there are some big differences. Sometimes we will have a tasting and you would swear one or two of the wines were a different varietal, but that was not the case with this tasting.

2004 Falesco Marciliano Cabernet Umbria – the color was dark ruby. The nose initially was big with caramel and ripe, rich fruit. The burst of scents quickly blew off to a very minimal nose which was slightly stinky. There was a bit of fruit in the flavor with big, grippy, slightly bitter tannins and good acid. The tannins were overwhelming in this wine.

2007 Luis Felipe Edwards Family Selection – This Cabernet Sauvignon is from the Colchagua Valley in Chile. The color was dark ruby with a slightly medicinal nose, smoke and dried fruit. The flavors tasted of dark fruit with big, grippy tannins once again. This wine has more fruit flavor and depth of flavor than the first wine, so the tannins seemed in better balance and did not finish with a bitter taste.

2008 Graham Beck “The Game Reserve” – From South Africa, this wine has a dark ruby color and complex nose of dark fruit and tobacco. The flavors are complex as well, with dark fruit, ripe cherries and significant tannins. The finish was longer that the previous wines, and finished with fruit and tannin. This wine tasted better balanced than the previous two wines and had much more complex and interesting flavors. This wine was the overall favorite of the group.

2005 Mason Napa Valley – The color was dark ruby. The nose was closed. The flavors were pleasant and tasted of tart cherries and complex spice flavors. The tannins were significant and there was a lot of acid in this wine. The finish was moderate in length and finished with tart fruit and tannins.

2006 Chateau Du Glana – From Saint Julien, Bordeaux France the Chateau Du Glana was very closed tonight. There were not a lot of fruit flavors in this wine, mostly tobacco with a light mouth feel. The tannins were moderate in amount and drying. with good acid. We have had this wine several times and liked it in the past. It wasn’t tasting well tonight. We were surprised when it was identified.

2005 Taltarni Cabernet Sauvignon Pyrenees Victoria -The color was dark ruby and had a distinctive minty nose. The flavors tasted of fruit, licorice and a bit of tobacco. The tannins were significant with a moderate amount of acid. The finish was moderate in length and finished with both fruit and tannins. This wine tasted well balanced and was the second favorite wine of the night.

It was all about the tannins in tonight’s tasting. It has been a while since we have tasted so much significant, drying tannins in so many wines. It reminded us of those Bordeaux tastings back in 2000.

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