I had the pleasure of participating in a great Cabernet tasting hosted by Sebastiani Winery. We tasted through four different cabernet’s from this incredible winery and I could not be happier. I first discovered Sebastiani way before my career as a Sommelier, and remember growing up with the wines, since my parents were big wine collectors, and it’s always nice to recognize a winery and then be able to taste with the winemaker and winery so many years later. I love that Sebastiani has stood the test of time, and still remains such an iconic winery!
We had the pleasure of tasting four fantastic Cabernet’s, all very different, distinct, and delicious.
2017 Alexander Valley Cabernet- 100% Cabernet and an absolutely delicious wine! Dried cranberries, blackberries, tea, and some vanilla round the nose and follow through to the palate. It’s from the northern area of Sonoma, which is a cooler part of Alexander Valley. This wine has vibrant acidity and just such lovely flavors that are alluring all the way to the finish. This wine is ideal for Cabernet drinkers and can easily be paired with Charcuterie and Cheese, to grilled vegetables, risotto, and even fish. It’s a wine that can be consumed now, but I am also excited to wait and see how this does in a few years (I used my coravin for this one) because the acidity shows a nice amount of aging potential.
2017 Old Vine Cabernet– From Sonoma County, this dark ruby red wine is ideal for any occasion! From 1962 vineyards, there’s an undeniable elegance that comes from old vines, and really makes these style wines attractive. It’s an intense wine, with plenty of acidity, that is also soft and more integrated. It’s from a cooler area of Sonoma, and boasts bright fruit, and soft tannins. This estate grown wine is 79% Cabernet and 21% Malbec; an excellent blend that builds richness and flavor!
2017 Gravel Bed Cabernet: This Cabernet is blended with a touch of Barbera at 2%. This wine is nice and ripe, with some slight sweetness from the fruit. Blackberry and dark cherry notes linger, and it almost reminds me of an Italian wine, except it is from California, which is a pleasant surprise and one I love for warm winter pairings. I think this wine would be ideal with braised meats and or duck confit! The finish lingers with espresso and tea notes followed by a lengthy herb finish. Overall this is a very interesting wine that you should absolutely make sure to taste with other wine loving friends!
2016 CherryBlock Cabernet- This wine delivers a great deal of complexity as well as elegance. It has nice currant notes, blackberry and some vanilla and spice. This wine is really fantastic and bold, with nice layers and even some cigar box spice. Overall I love this wine with grilled meats, because of its full body and long lingering finish. This Cabernet is made with a touch of Malbec at 3% and 12% Merlot, which give it really striking purple fruit notes and long lasting flavors. This wine is just ideal, try it and you will see!
Overall this was a fantastic tasting and I learned so much more about Sebastiani. It’s funny, my parents as wine collectors used to collect Sebastiani and I still have some 1996 in their cellar at the home where I grew up. Every now and then I decant one, and decanted one in 2013 (during hurricane Sandy), and then again after this tasting. It’s amazing to see the acidity in these wines as well as the quality production really can make these wines last so long! Of course, older wines are certainly a different taste, so you really have to enjoy them but I do love to see how wine can transition in the bottle, and Sebastiani Cabernet’s can certainly hold their own!
Always remember, eat what you like and drink what you love. Please pair responsibly!