As the the weather gets cooler, the air more crisp and we start cooking hearty winter meals, it’s definitely Cabernet season.  So, here are a handful of quality Cabs that “kick butt” for their prices. Enjoy and cheers!

Treana 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon

Grape(s): 85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot, & 5% Syrah

Region: Paso Robles, California

Price: 20-25

Tasting Notes:

Black cherries and cassis mingle with highlights of dark chocolate, caramel, and clove on the nose. Lush black currant, boysenberry, and dark cherry play among allusions of caramel, minerals, and toasty vanilla on the palate. A velvety Cab, with polished tannins, it would be a lovely companion for a prim rib.

Rating: 91

Smith & Hook 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon

Grape(s): Cabernet Sauvignon

Region: Central Coast, Ca

Price: 15-20

Tasting Notes:

Luscious aromas of cherries, blackberries, and plums interweave with hints of vanilla and coffee on the nose. Smooth tannins carry flavors of blackberry, dark cherry, and ripe plum, which are accented by notes of mocha and vanilla on the palate. Drink this Cab now, while waiting for your cellared ones to develop – it’s elegant yet rich.

Rating: 91

Clos du Bois 2013 “Sonoma Reserve” Cabernet Sauvignon

Grape(s): 75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 13% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot, 6% Malbec, &1% Cabernet Franc.

Region: Alexander Valley, Ca

Price: 15-20

Tasting Notes:

Aromas of blackberries, currants, and cherries weave together with suggestions of vanilla, and toasty oak on the nose. Supple tannins frame flavors of cassis, blackberry, and black cherry that play off of nuances of vanilla, clove, and oak. A lovely wine with a good amount of bottle age, it’s drinking very well now. For lovers of traditional Cali Cab, it’s good buy for under $20.

Rating: 90

Robert Mondavi 2016 “Bourbon Barels” Cabernet Sauvignon

Grape(s): Cabernet

Region: Monterey County, California

Price: 10-15

Tasting Notes:

Lush dark fruit blends with aromas of caramel and toasty vanilla on the nose. The palate reveals flavors of blackberry and dark cherry that flow into highlights of caramel and vanilla. Smooth and approachable, it’s a nice buy for around $12.

Rating: 89