Ravenswood Cabernet Sauvignon Vintners’ Blend 2004

So, I went to the liquor store today with a list of wines that I’d like to try. Unfortunately none of them were on the shelves, so either I have a bad eye or need to find another place to buy wine! In any event, I decided to narrow my view to price and type of wine: I knew I wanted a cabernet sauvignon, and I knew my goal was to keep the prices at or below $10. So, I had a few options, and decided on Ravenswood’s Cabernet Sauvignon Vintner’s Blend 2004. Before I get into the actual review, let’s look a little into Ravenswood’s history and what exactly comprises their Vintner’s Blends.

Ravenswood is located in Sonoma, CA. The winery began in 1976, when Joel Peterson had the dream to make wines that would rival the best in Europe. His first batch, a Dry Zinfandel, was a success at the San Francisco Tasting. Ever since Peterson has been perfecting Ravenswood’s Zin, which is their most notable wine. Later, Peterson wanted to introduce a blend, something that families could enjoy while at table. The Vintner Blend was born. There are several Blends, and all of them have the characteristic of having a great taste, though not sophisticated or distinguished enough to be taken from the meal. The wine is good, but it makes its best impression with food.

The question now is: why didn’t B.J. buy a bottle of Zinfandel if that’s what Ravenswood is famous for? Well, for one, I looked all this stuff up after I bought it. Secondly, and more importantly, I think the wines wineries are famous for are reviewed too often, while their lesser known wines are kept in the dark *no pun intended*. While sometimes the lesser-knowns should stay that way, there are occasionally wines that come through as surprisingly rich and tasty.

This particular cab sauv is not surprising in its flavor, sorry to say. Its flavors don’t jump out at you, and in a way there’s nothing particularly distinctive about it. However, the black cherry, currant, and spicy flavors are present and noticeable. The taste does not last long, which can be a bit disappointing, but the ending texture is almost butter-like as the wine slips down the tongue. The tannin is not overpowering at all, letting the natural flavors come out more. The give and take balance of this wine gives us a cab that can be enjoyed any time, though especially with food (meat or a Fall pasta dish – e.g. squash). While I wouldn’t run out and get it right now, I would keep it in the back of your mind next time you peruse the wine selection. Looking for a nice, smooth wine to go with a meal, and looking to keep the price on the cheap? This won’t let you down.
Price: $10


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