Saturday, February 20, 2010

Tale of Two Cabernets: Washington vs. Chile!

It really is unusual for me to open Cabernet Sauvignon on back to back nights. But that happened Friday/Saturday.

Friday night I had a friend over for wine, cheese, crackers and Chile's Odfjell Armador's Cabernet Sauvignon.

This wine got 90 points from Wine Enthusiast and is a real bargain at around $12 a bottle. I picked mine up at Grapevine Cottage in Zionsville

This was smooth, drinkable Cabernet with easy to handle tannins. It had ripe and flavorful fruit without being overpowering. I'd call this a good Cabernet for those looking for something a little different than the powerful/tannic California Cabs.

It isn't for big wine drinkers but darn good wine at the price point. I have contemplated adding a 100-point or four star system when writing about wine, I don't think this one is a 90 but maybe an 86-87 wine.

I've always thought some description of the wine is what for those who read Grape Sense are looking for. If you have tried a few of the wines I've written about in a year and a half - you decide if our palates match!

Wine number two is from Washington State's iconic Chateau Ste Michelle. It was a 2006 Columbia Valley Cab. Prunes, dried fruit and a little spice with much bigger fruit highlight this $15.99 wine.

This wine is a blend of predominantly Cabernet with some Syrah and still other grapes in some vintages. But this wine had the big fruit-forward and richness I've experienced in other Washington State red wines.

I picked up this bottle at Bar Berry in Lafayette - not one of my normal spots but I stopped by on a visit to Village Bottle Shoppe in W. Lafayette.

Duck Pond, Milbrandt, and Chateau Ste Michelle are all Washington Cabs I've enjoyed in the last year and I'd heartily recommend to Cab drinkers.

Now I'm doing points - well, tonight I'm doing points. I had this wine with some nicely pan seared, then roasted, beef tenderloin with lots of cracked black pepper. The wine held up nicely. I'd call this one the 90-point wine!

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