Cabernet Sauvignon is one of the world's most widely recognized red wine grape varieties. It is grown in nearly every major wine producing country among a diverse spectrum of climates from Canada's Okanagan Valley to Lebanon's Beqaa Valley. Cabernet Sauvignon became internationally recognized through its prominence in Bordeaux wines where it is often blended with Merlot and Cabernet Franc. From France, the grape spread across Europe and to the New World where it found new homes in places like California's Santa Cruz Mountains, Napa Valley, New Zealand's Hawkes Bay, Australia's Margaret River and Coonawarra regions and Chile's Maipo Valley and Colchagua. The classic profile of Cabernet Sauvignon tends to be full-bodied wines with high tannins and noticeable acidity that contributes to the wine's aging potential. In cooler climates, Cabernet Sauvignon tends to produce wines with blackcurrant notes that can be accompanied by green bell pepper notes, mint and cedar which will all become more pronounced as the wine ages. In more moderate climates the blackcurrant notes are often seen with black cherry and black olives notes while in very hot climates the current flavors can veer towards the over-ripe and "jammy" side.
- Item #: i_268480Bottle Size: 750mlJeb Dunnuck: 92 PointsWinemaker Matt Dees has the kind of resume that makes other winemakers green with envy. Having previously worked at other noteworthy estates such as Staglin in Napa, and Craggy Range in New Zealand, Matt has learned how to coax the best out of several different grapes grown in a variety of climates. And now, the wines Matt has made at Jonata have earned as high as 100 points!
Owned by Stan Kroenke (who also owns Screaming Eagle), Jonata is located in Ballard Canyon, just south of Los Olivos and is focused on Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, and Syrah. The entire Jonata property is comprised of sand, with varying amounts of clay. The vineyards are sustainably farmed (herbicides and pesticides don't even enter the conversation), and the area enjoys very cool nights due to winds coming off the Pacific Ocean, mixed with very warm days during the summer months. This helps to create wines of exceptional structure, intensity, and ageability…and it's not uncommon for these Jonata wines to earn 97-100 points from the critics!
While the Jonata wines are meant to age gracefully in the cellar, Matt selects some of the more approachable barrels of Cabernet Sauvignon and bottles them under The Paring label. By doing this, you quite literally get a wine that is a "chip off the old block"! This 2015 Cabernet blend has been aged in French oak barrels, of which 55% of them were new. This is something that is typically reserved for Cabernets that sell for 3-5 times this price! Matt then increases complexity and nuance by blending in Cabernet Franc, Merlot, and Petit Verdot. Petit Verdot costs more than Cabernet Sauvignon, so again, you get something reserved for a wine that typically costs more. We can only imagine the conversations that go back-and-forth between Stan and Matt!
So if you're looking for a Cabernet-blend that packs a lot of flavor for a rather modest price...then today is your day!
JEB DUNNUCK 92 POINTS - "The 2015 Red Wine is the Bordeaux blend of the estate and is 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Cabernet Franc, and the balance Merlot and Petit Verdot, all from declassified Jonata lots. Its deep, inky purple color is followed by a rich, powerful wine that's loaded with notions of blackcurrants, unsmoked tobacco, graphite, and crushed rocks. With background oak, full body, ripe yet present tannins, and a great finish, it's going to keep for at least 7-8 years."