An ‘Elbow-Bending’ Cab Sauv

An ‘Elbow-Bending’ Cab Sauv

Light, quaffable Cabernet from Chile

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So many red wines are proud of being “impenetrable” these days. You know what I mean: thick, opaque, mouth-numbingly challenging to enjoy. Don’t misunderstand, I love a complex, unctuous wine as well as the next imbiber, but sometimes a lighter-bodied wine, almost styled like the old “Chianti in a straw-colored flask” is what I want. Today’s wine doesn’t taste like Chianti. Good thing, because it’s a Cabernet Sauvignon! But this is a wine to quaff, a wine to accompany book club, a satisfying drink without the need to think too much. From Chile, Ventisquero Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon fits this dwindling category very nicely.

2015 Ventisquero Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve $15 srp

Transparent purple to ruby in color. With a pretty, pure nose, this is fruit-forward, soft and ripe, with an almost sweet impression. Dark berry, plum and a touch of oregano are in the bouquet. A light-bodied, quaffable style with black cherry and light chocolate impressions on the palate. Clean, refreshing and “elbow-bending.” (85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Syrah) Drink now–2018.

88/100 points

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Arturo Ciompi
Trained as a classical clarinetist and conductor, Arturo plied his trade for many years in New York, performing with the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, New York City Opera, the American Symphony and countless chamber music groups. While living in Durham, Arturo became the wine manager at two iconic gourmet stores: Fowler’s in Durham and Southern Season in Chapel Hill. He had a wine spot on NPR in the ’90s and has been a continuously published wine journalist since 1997. He has won national awards for his work and is currently writing for Durham Magazine and its weekly blog, “Wine Wednesdays”. In addition, he loves teaching the clarinet. Read more on his website.