Having tasted and enjoyed the Del Carlo Zinfandel a few months ago I was looking forward to seeing how their Cabernet Sauvignon was. After Zinfandel, Cabernet is the varietal from Dry Creek Valley that first comes to mind. The better Cabernets from this region have unique characteristics which display a real sense of place. The 2005 Del Carlo Winery Cabernet Sauvignon is 100% varietal. This offering was aged in new French oak for 18 months. Just 240 cases of this wine were made and it sells for $45. This wine was just released last month.
Plum, cedar and vanilla notes dominate a fragrant nose. From the very first sip, red fruit, particularly cherry notes lead the palate. These are followed by tobacco, leather and dark, dusty baker's chocolate characteristics. Excellent mineral notes lead the finish which also has classic Dry Creek dust, bramble, earth and copious spice elements. This wine has good acidity and solid but approachable tannins. An hour in the decanter is recommended for this wine to drink to its potential right now. A marbled steak is also recommended as a classic match.
What stood out to me most about this wine is the solid core of berry fruit that shines throughout the palate. Once the wine opens up the fruit is rich and bright but never over the top and bombastic. This Cabernet Sauvignon is both another solid effort from Del Carlo Winery as well as a fine example of Dry Creek. I for one plan to keep my eye on their future releases and I recommend that you do too.
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