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2007 Guarachi Cabernet Sauvignon

The inaugural wine from Guarachi Family Vineyards. Great choice. The wine showcases what a great winemaker, Paul Hobbs, can do in one of Napa's best years. This is a big wine in a big bottle, and it should share the table with a big steak, perhaps a cowboy ribeye. Highly Recommended. DH
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2007 Domaine Eden Cabernet Sauvignon

A very nice, approachable cabernet blend. Attractive nose of ligonberries and anise, even a hint of sugar cookies, of all things. It has the advantage of being 13.5% alcohol, so it does not have the nose burn that so many high-alcohol cabs seem to have these days. Light tannins and pleasant fruit on the palate with hints of hoisin sauce (i.e. plums), but not a lingering finish. Should not be confused with Mount Eden Estate cab. Nevertheless, a solid, if unexciting, wine. Try with simply prepared steaks or roasts. Recommended.
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2008 Penley Estate “Phoenix” Cabernet Sauvignon

The color is inky dark with maroon edges. The nose is lightly jammy blackcurrant with a background of vanilla and eucalyptus. The palate is more harsh than the nose. Blackcurrant leads, along with some vegetal tobacco leaf as well a higher tones of mint and eucalyptus. It does not show a lot of development from attack through mid-palate to finish, ending with some brown sugar and vanilla from wood. At this price point it is very competitive with California cabernets, showing a more deft hand with wood flavors than is usually seen in the under-$15 crowd, as well as some acid to keep it food-friendly. Drink with a skirt steak. For the price, Recommended. DH