At last… a Cabernet that Napa Cab obsessives can drink everyday without opening up a new equity line on the house (if you can still get those nowadays). Winemaker Cameron Hughes approaches wines a bit differently. He’s part of the growing trend of “traveling winemakers” who don’t own vineyards but take advantage of the bulk market to craft wines for less money. Every year, in wine regions throughout the world, excess wine and/or grapes get released to buyers and people like Cameron Hughes siphon it up. Without all the overhead, the savings on the fruit gets passed on to the customer. It’s an interesting concept but I wonder if it can be sustained if the grape glut dries up?
Due to the fact that only 2800 cases were produced, Cameron Hughes Lot 189 might be hard to find. But worth the effort. Vibrant blackberry, black cherry, blueberry, cinnamon and the characteristic Stag’s Leap dustiness define the sip, with a swath of soft leather, mild tannins and balanced acidity. Has a luscious, silky finish. The blend is 82% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Cabernet Franc, 5% Petit Verdot, and 5% Malbec. Quite quaffable with food or just for sipping.
Sweetness: 1 out of 10
Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5
Occasion: Sample sent from the winery.
Availability: Big box retailers but find where to buy Cameron Hughes wines on their website.
Food pairing: Paired nicely with a grilled, spice-rubbed flank steak but would be beautiful with rosemary-roasted lamb