Cape Cauldron, Stellenbosch, South Africa; 14.0% ABV
$10 at the Richmond, CA, store
There was an Eighth Wonder Chardonnay that didn’t sell very well, but this Cabernet looked like it could be pretty good. It might be, but I can’t tell yet.
On the first night, I felt this wine never really opened up. While it showed promising flavors of earthy bing cherry, plum / blackberry, typical SA savory flavors (bay leaf, rust / dried orange peel), the fruit never really came forward, and it stayed rather closed and cranberry / plum acid. It seemed like there was a bit packed in that that was not coming out, so I am hopeful about the saved bottle.
However, the saved, single-glass, screw-cap bottle of this wine, while still tasting like good Cabernet — ripe and tart earthy bing cherry, maybe a little green bell pepper — still did not really open up. So, while this seems like pretty good Cabernet for the money, I’m guessing it still needs a bit more age for me to really appreciate it. Folks who like more reserved and tannic wines might like it now.