- The Washington Times - Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Dry Creek Vineyard, Cabernet Sauvignon, Dry Creek Valley, 2004 ($22)

Many California cabernets push the envelope these days. They taste big and brawny, with plenty of alcoholic heat, and nary a hint of finesse. How refreshing, then, to find a reasonably priced cabernet whose appeal comes from harmony rather than heft.

Dry Creek”s 2004 cabernet has plenty of flavor, but since it keeps all its components in check, elegant restraint becomes its calling card.

The Dry Creek Valley in California’s Sonoma County tends to produce grapes that naturally yield graceful wines. The region may be best known for zinfandel, but cabernet is planted even more widely. Because the resulting wines are not as renowned as those from some other California regions, they have the added advantage of offering fair value.

This wine should age gracefully for a good five to seven years, but it certainly is drinking very nicely now. Pair it with beef, lamb or even hearty pork dishes.

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