Cabernet Sauvignons Priced $20-$30

Jan 24, 2010 by

One of my winemaker buddies was grumbling about my last post – Cabs under $20. He contends that any winemaker producing wines that sell for under $20 should be shot because it undercuts the medium (wines $20-$40) price range wines. He works for a winery that produces fantastic wines in the medium price category, so the sales of those $20 and under wines directly impacts the sale of his wines. This is a valid point – it is a jungle out there in wine-sales-land, but there really are a bunch of GREAT wines available under $20. Nuff said.

This post is all about great Cabs priced between $20 and $30.

Check this out ~ these wines come from Napa Valley, Sonoma County, El Dorado County, Paso Robles and Lodi. These appellations ALL produce rockin’ good Cabs! Neener, neener, neeener – good Cabs don’t come from Napa Valley exclusively!

Oh yeah – we bloggers now have to say this ~ all wine samples were provided complimentary by the participating wineries. Thanks wineries!

My panel and I tasted a goodly handful of Cabernet Sauvignons, priced between $20 and $30. The following five wines were our favorites:

Five Stars
Panel Favorite!
Starmont Merryvale
2006, Napa Valley $27
One sniff and you know you?re drinking a classic Cab! Black cherry, cassis, mocha and baking spices delight the nose and carry on as flavors in the seductively smooth mouth.

Five Stars
Kendall-Jackson
2006 Grand Reserve, Sonoma County $25
Tempting scents of blackcurrant, cherry, vanilla, cigar box, pine and mint lure the taster into a richly textured mouthful of consistent flavors.

Five Stars
Sierra Vista
2005 Reserve, El Dorado County $26
Think about a big slab of warm cherry pie with vanilla ice cream and you’re halfway there! This Cab is absolutely delicious and balanced, with aromas and flavors of cherry, vanilla, cinnamon and toasty oak, all wrapped up in a velvety mouthfeel.

Four Stars
Vina Robles
2007 Huerhuero, Paso Robles $26
This is a wine that could get you into trouble – it is waaaay too easy to drink! A berry basket (blackberry, raspberry and black cherry) of fruity aromas meld seamlessly with brown spices and vanilla. These aromas continue as flavors in the big, rich mouth. Dangerously delicious!

Three Stars
Earthquake
2006, Lodi $28
Dark, brooding and seductive, like a black velvet Elvis. This is not a wine to be trifled with. Intense aromas of coffee, dark chocolate, black cherry and wintergreen romance the nose and palate. The mouthfeel is huge and velvety smooth.

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