Castillo de Molina Cabernet Sauvignon Reserva 2005

Molina Today's selection is the final Cabernet for the week in the value category. The Castillo de Molina Cabernet is from Curico Valley. This is estate fruit grown in Vina San Pedro's vineyards. Castillo de Molina is one of Vina San Pedro's second labels. For those not familiar with them, Vina San Pedro's flagship Cabernet Sauvignon is one of the best coming out of Chile year in and year out. For my money it often runs neck and neck with the legendary Don Melchor. This Cabernet spent a year in a combination of French and American oak barrels. 30% of the barrels used are new. The first whiff of this wine reveals vanilla and blueberries. After the wine opens up a bit some mocha and cherry notes also emerge from the nose.  The palate shows some toasty oak layered on top of berry flavors. This wine is very light bodied for a Cabernet. It features a firm acidity and the tannins present are soft and round. The Molina has no hard edges and certainly goes down smoothly. The finish features some spicy white pepper notes. The finish is a touch below average. This wine should be paired up with lighter food than the average Cabernet Sauvignon. Mild cheeses and roasted chicken are 2 items that come to mind which would work well.

I found previous vintages of this wine to be more impressive. The 2003 in particular was excellent in it's price category. The retail price of this wine is around $11. If you shop around you can find it for a couple of dollars less. At around $9 it's an OK buy. I would not expect this wine to improve in the bottle. However it should drink as it does now for 3-5 years. Without question, of the three value priced Cabernets I looked at this week, the Guenoc is hands down the best value.

Up Next: Two selections from Martin & Weyrich

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