The Glenelly estate vineyard slopes east, enjoying warm morning sun that slants away toward afternoon, slowing ripening. The 2014 vintage was wet throughout, with a brief, amiable spell in January and February. But cooler weather returned again in March as the vines were making their final lunge toward ripeness. The Cabernet Sauvignon was hand-harvested and fermented with ambient yeasts, then moved to French oak for malolactic and twelve months of aging.
The results are savory, highly perfumed, and satisfying. The aromas are keynoted by juniper and crushed juniper berry, spruce and pine, black plum skin and ripe blackberries. The body is smooth and even-tempered, but with a crunchy coffee bite and a blaze of bright cherry just before forest darkness closes things down. Squeaky tannins add texture, and the whole thing winds up feeling not fruity and sweet but savory and bitter, in a good way.
Delicious with aged cheeses and red meats and game, especially herb-rubbed and smoked. A terrific value.
14.5% abv | $18 (sample) Imported by Cape Classics