2008 Balgownie Cabernet Sauvignon Bendigo Victoria (Elsewhere $25)

SKU #1115643 92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Deep garnet colored, the 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon gives pronounced aromas of freshly crushed cassis and blackberries, pencil lead, cloves and cigar boxes plus a whiff of menthol. The full bodied palate demonstrated commendable structure with a high level of acid and firm, ripe, fine-grained tannins. There are plenty of classic, ripe Cabernet flavors in the mouth and throughout the long finish. Delicious now, it should continue to cellar and evolve gracefully through 2020+. (92+)

91 points Wine Enthusiast

 *Editors' Choice* The Bendigo region of Victoria isn’t very well known, but Balgownie does good work there with Cabernet Sauvignon. The 2008 displays aromas of mint, cassis and smoke alongside fully ripe flavors of cassis and chocolate. The tannins are firm and a bit drying on the finish, but the chocolaty richness of the fruit shows through. Drink 2013–2020.  (7/2011)

90 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Pungent aromas of redcurrant, cherry, cocoa powder, clove and tobacco. Silky on entry, then vibrant and focused in the middle, with strong, almost lively acidity energizing the red berry flavors, and suave florality providing lift. A juicy and penetrating style, with very good finishing clarity and length.  (8/2011)

Wine Spectator

 Taut, with a lively acid balance to the juicy red berry and herb flavors, lingering easily. Best from 2012 through 2015. (Web-2011)

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Price: $19.99
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Staff Image By: John Majeski | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 11/30/2012 | Send Email
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If you happen to walk by this wine in the Australian aisle (probably floor-stacked as we purchased damn near everything we could get our purple paws on) and continue walking, it is your profound and lasting loss, my friend! I will embellish the excellent comments of my esteemed colleagues Jim Chanteloup and Ryan Woodhouse by stating that, if tasted alongside a fine Bordeaux, this Bendigo beauty would effortlessly compete or triumph note for note, swirl for swirl and mouthful for… a lovely color of crushed garnets, restrained aromatics of currant, blackberry and spicebox cedar waft from the glass, revealing a deep, layered palate comprised of moist earth, mint, cassis and tobacco pouch flavors. Truly a must buy for both holiday gifts and parties, this wine deserves 4 full glasses!
Top Value!

Staff Image By: Jim Chanteloup | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 11/27/2012 | Send Email
With just a little time, a gorgeous nose unfolds here with cedar, minerals, red currant, tobacco leaf/cigar box, cassis, dark plum, a hint of menthol, earth and pencil lead. On the palate, supple fine gritty tannins support the fruit with good balancing acidity and superb length. This is flat out outstanding Cabernet at this price and a great value.

Staff Image By: Ryan Woodhouse | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 11/27/2012 | Send Email
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You have to believe me when I say this is an Aussie Cab for Bordeaux lovers! The wine expresses pure blackberry, cassis fruit with subtle hints of freshly picked mint. With a couple swirls of the glass beautiful undertones of cedar, leather and pencil shavings emerge. A fine crushed rock minerality lingers on the pure finish. This wine has restraint and poise well beyond its price point. It is both concentrated and elegant. I think this wine is fantastic now but also shows the precise balance and grippy tannin structure to age with grace for another decade plus.
Drink from 2012 to 2025

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Cabernet Sauvignon and Blends

- Cabernet Sauvignon has come a long way from its role as a blending varietal, however dominant, in the wines of Bordeaux. Today it is the most planted red varietal in the world. Identified as a descendent of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc, the late-ripening Cabernet Sauvignon needs to be planted in warmer climates to fully ripen. Its small berries can easily be identified for their distinctive blue color, thick skins and high tannins. And while the varietal has its own definitive characteristics: green pepper-like aromas and black currant flavors among them, it is perhaps most prized for its ability to convey terroir, vintage and winemaking. A relatively new varietal, Cabernet Sauvignon started making inroads into the wines of the Médoc and Graves in the late-18th century. Today it is also dominant in the up-and-coming Entre-Deux-Mers region of Bordeaux and can also be found in Southwest France. It is the companion varietal to Sangiovese in Italy's Super Tuscans and is planted all over Europe, stretching to lesser-known winegrowing regions like Russia and Lebanon. In the Americas Cabernet Sauvignon has found champions in every nook and cranny of California and among winemakers in Washington, where it complements plantings of Merlot. In South America, Cab thrives in Chile, but can also be found in smaller amounts in Argentina and even in Mexico.


- While it is true that the greatest strides in Australian winemaking have come in the last 30 years or so, commercial viticulture began as early as the 1820s and has developed uninterrupted ever since. The majority of the great wine regions are in the southeastern area of the continent, including Barossa Valley, Clare Valley, McLaren Vale, and Coonawarra in South Australia; Yarra Yarra Valley and Pyrenees in Victoria; and the Upper and Lower Hunter Valleys in New South Wales. Many of the wines from Southeastern Australia are based on Shiraz or Cabernet Sauvignon and various blends including Grenache and Mourvedre. In Western Australia, along the Margaret River, great strides are being made with Pinot Noir as well as Bordeaux-styled reds. There are also many world-class releases of Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc from the land Down Under, where Riesling also enjoys international acclaim. While many equate Aussie wines with “value,” there are more than a few extremely rare and pricey options, which never fail to earn the highest ratings from wine publications and critics throughout the world. View a list of bestselling items from Australia.


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