Everyone loves Napa Cabs but who can afford them? Elite Napa wines are crazy expensive – Opus One is sold in stores for only $300, but cult wines such as Screaming Eagle sell north of $3,000! Napa producers are embracing the “direct to consumer” model (winery wine clubs and mailing lists) and bypassing retail distribution channels. For decades distributors (to retail stores) have promoted Napa Cabernet and Chardonnay as “world class” wines worthy of comparison with the best wines in the world. And now their reward is less wine to sell – how’s that for gratitude!

Unfortunately, price escalation has affected all Napa wines and good affordable Napa Cabs are difficult to find. Freemark Abbey is an iconic name in Napa history – 1 of 12 California wineries participating in the historic Paris Tasting in 1976. The Jackson Family, with other wine brands such as La Crema, Cambria and Kendall Jackson, is 6th owner of winery dating back to 1876.


FREEMARK ABBEY Napa Cabernet Sauvignon 2012
75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 17% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc, 3% Petit Verdot, 2% Malbec | 14.5% ALC | $40 |
Freemark Abbey has no estate vineyards – grapes are sourced from long-standing grower contracts. Mostly Cabernet Sauvignon, this wine combines all five Bordeaux varietals at a reasonable price.

Wine Advocate (R Parker) 93 rating says “An absolutely fabulous value is the 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa. This comes from multiple sources and there are 46,000+ cases of it. A stunning Cabernet Sauvignon and a classic example of Napa viticulture, this blend of 75.5% Cabernet Sauvignon and the rest Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot and Malbec, was aged just over two years in oak. Loads of sweet blackcurrant fruit, cocoa, a touch of toast, earth, and baking spice are all present in this wine that has terrific fruit on the attack and mid-palate, a full-bodied mouthfeel, no hard edges and a luscious, opulent, gorgeously pure style. Drink it over the next 10-15 years. Although I wouldn’t be surprised to see it last longer.”

Cheers, Bob the Wineguy

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