Saturday, April 18, 2009

*** $ Excelsior Cabernet Sauvignon, 2004, South Africa - Review and Rating

Check out Cabernet Sauvignon at Amazon.

Review: South Africa does generate some interesting value wines these days, both red and white. The Excelsior is so commonly known, this tasting can be considered in the "take one for the team" series. By that I mean provided substantive tasting notes to a wine that is not normally thought of as deserving such treatment. But I have enjoyed Excelsior in the past, and I will not let a good price be sufficient reason for ignoring a wine! In fact, some of my all-time-best-values are wines whose quality levels were simply significantly above their bargain prices.

The Excelsior Cabernet Sauvignon hails from vineyards in the Robertson region, in the Western Cape section of South Africa.

Well, enough philosophy and geography... let's get on with the tasting. This bottle is vintage 2004, now almost five years old - a reasonable age for a straightforward cabernet. In the glass, this is deep, broody, bloody red, opaque in the middle, just a hint of medium red at the rim. Aroma is fairly shy and simple, red beets with a touch of oak. On the palate, Excelsior cabernet is much more generous, opening up into a fleshy, full, slightly-sweet middle-mouth experience of deep fruit with smoky, charcoal, peppery edges. It finishes just a touch sweet with plums and a hint of cherry. Hides the 14.5 percent alcohol pretty well. Solid. Three stars out of five on the Spirit of Wine scale. I would find my way back to it, but would explore other wines in a given evening too. Excellent value at its price.

Not quite the three plus stars I rated it two years ago in one of my early Spirit of Wine reviews.

Find Excelsior Cabernet Sauvignon at WineZap.

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