2014 Taken Napa Valley Bordeaux Blend

SKU #1315894 93 points James Suckling

 A full-bodied red with polished and chewy tannins and chocolate and currant character. Shows focus and tension. On it. 60% Cabernet, 40% Merlot. Better in 2020.  (5/2017)

K&L Notes

All who lament that a good Napa Valley Cabernet blend can't be found for under $30, take a look at this. Taken Wine Company was founded by Napa millennials Josh Phelps, whose father is a Napa Valley winemaker (but no relation to Joseph Phelps), and Carlo Trinchero (yes, relation to the St. Helena wine family). More than just a saucy name - other wines in the stable include "Complicated" and "Available" - the Taken Cabernet-Merlot blend is a solid wine and a great value.

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Price: $24.99
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By: Mari Keilman | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 10/3/2017 | Send Email
When tasting almost a hundred wines a week, it’s pretty hard to be blown away, but the first time I tasted the Taken Cabernet Sauvignon, I was floored at the quality and balance of the wine, and then I was left speechless when they told me the price! Right out the gates you are met with aromatics of black cherry, red plum and dark chocolate. The palate is plush and full bodied, with a nice balance between ripe fruit, integrated tannins and balanced acidity. This wine isn’t for those faint of heart, though, because there is plenty of grip and structure that stands up to even the big boys in Napa Valley!

By: Anthony Russo | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 10/2/2017 | Send Email
Great nose of deep cassis; a bouquet blend of floral and fruit notes, mainly led by plum. On the palate, everything about this wine is so well integrated. The tannins are soft, but the liquid has a nice little grip to it. Flavors are just as beautiful as the nose. At this price, it's a no-brainer.

By: Blake Conklin | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 9/28/2017 | Send Email
The 2014 Red Blend from Taken Wine Company is a bold, yet well balanced red with nice flavor profiles of dark stone fruit, and tobacco. The finish is smooth and velvety. A fantastic buy for the red blend lover.

By: Trey Beffa | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 9/27/2017 | Send Email
Lots of wine for the money here- The Taken is a fairly sturdy, muscular wine that is almost reminiscent of a Bordeaux red from a riper vintage. Tannins are present but are ripe and integrated; hints of oak and lots of black cherry and mocha flavors round out this winner!

By: Stephanie Vidales | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 8/29/2017 | Send Email
Taken is a lovely blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot that's full bodied and would be delicious paired with easygoing dishes like barbecued ribs, pizza or burgers. Zinfandel like qualities are shown in this wine but with more grip and structure. Blackberries, plum, dark chocolate, oak spice are shown on the palate with a smooth and round finish. A great value for Napa Valley reds!

By: David Driscoll | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 8/25/2017 | Send Email
It's the ever-present question at K&L: what's a $20-ish California Cabernet (or Cab blend) that our customers can drink right now? As in tonight for dinner! Those who like their red juicy, full-bodied, with light oak influence, and plenty of soft fruit will definitely be "taken" by this wine. It has a particular set of skills...to quote Liam Neeson. If you're looking for a dependable CA table red that's a step up from the $10-$15 crowd, the Taken is a crowd pleasing choice. Meant for modern drinking in the modern age!

Additional Information:


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.

United States

- When people consider domestic wine, they normally think about the state of California. The fine viticultural Region within California, including the Napa Valley, Sonoma, Santa Cruz Mountains, Mendocino and Santa Barbara, are capable of growing grapes of world-class quality. But there's plenty of fabulous wine coming from other states, too. Oregon, Washington and New York are also causing eyebrows (and glassware) to be raised around the world.


- With the explosive growth that California's wine industry has seen the past several years, it's easy to view winemaking and grape growing in the Golden State as a recent phenomenon. And while it's true that California's viticultural history is brief compared to several European countries, this state's roots date back well over 200 years. Due to the enormous response to California wine within the United States and worldwide, there are thousands of excellent and diverse wines being produced within the state each year.
Specific Appellation:

Napa Valley

- America's most famous wine region, which encompasses a varied geographical territory running about 20 miles long from the San Francisco Bay northward to the foot of Mount St. Helena. Napa's great diversity, both in terms of climate and terroir, has led to the creation of a number of smaller AVAs like Stags Leap District, Rutherford, Howell Mountain, Oakville and Mount Veeder, among others. Cabernet and chardonnay still reign supreme, but just about everything under the sun is grown in Napa Valley, in quality levels ranging from $2 jug wine to $500 a bottle California cab.