International Cabernet Sauvignon Day is coming up at the end of August. Get to know this drop that’s described as the grandest of all red wines
When Decanter magazine describes cabernet sauvignon as the “grandest of all red wine varieties”, it’s an accolade worth taking notice of. If, like many Kiwis, you tend to gravitate to pinot noir as your red of choice, it’s worth taking a detour via deliciously full-bodied cab savs.
WHAT IS IT?
A fortuitous mash-up that occurred in France in the 1600s between red cabernet franc and sauvignon blanc grapes. The predominant varietal of the influential Bordeaux region, cabernet sauvignon vines were eventually planted across New World countries like America, Australia, Chile and New Zealand.
WHAT DOES IT TASTE LIKE?
If pinot noir is at the light end of the body scale with delicate spices and fresh berry flavours, and shiraz is towards the top with full-bodied fleshy fruits and oodles of spice, cabernet sauvignon is also at the top with deliciously full-bodied, dry (not sweet) dark fruits often shot through with gutsy notes of green capsicum, tobacco, vanilla and aromatic woods, and eucalyptus in Australian examples.
Cabernet sauvignon is so perfect for food matching, it’s almost a crime not to plan an elaborate spread to enjoy alongside these types of wine. Match to platters of charcuterie meats, olives, hard cheeses like cheddar, parmesan and pecorino, blue cheese, charred or slow-cooked red meats with thyme, rosemary and garlic, and rich tomato and mushroom dishes.
CABERNET SAUVIGNONS TO TRY
We’ve selected three incredible cab savs from Taylors Wines, because this Clare Valley winery was founded on cabernets in 1969 with the planting of cabernet sauvignon vines, inspired by the great producers of Bordeaux. Taylors first cabernet sauvignon was released in 1973 and quickly won one of Australia’s most coveted wine prizes, a tradition that continues today, with numerous accolades including Taylors The Visionary being voted the World’s Best Cabernet at the International Competition of Cabernets in France.
Taylors The Visionary
Winner of the World’s Best Cabernet accolade, this wine doesn’t disappoint. Created as a tribute to founder founder Bill Taylor Senior, The Visionary is made with Taylors' finest grapes. Deliciously dark red in colour, you’ll find flavours of blackcurrant, dark cherry and mint, with a pleasingly smoky, charred oak and coffee follow through. RRP $179.00
Taylors Jaraman Cabernet Sauvignon
This velvety cabernet has aromas of dark cherry, mint and eucalyptus, plus intense flavours of cassis and blackberry fruit along with attractive oak characters of cigar box and tobacco leaf. RRP $29.99
Taylors Clare Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
An intense cabernet sauvignon with distinctive blackcurrant and cassis flavours, subtle oak and cedar woods tweaked with tobacco and spice, fine tannins and a lingering finish. RRP $16.99
Taylors Promised Land Cabernet Sauvignon
A balanced, medium-bodied wine with a silky-smooth mouth feel, gentle palate of juicy blackcurrant with subtle hints of coffee and savoury cedar, and a lingering flavourful finish. RRP $13.99