Dale Dietrich
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J. Lohr – Estates – Seven Oaks – Cabernet Sauvignon (2007)

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j. lohr estates seven oaks - cabernet 2.5 rating  (4/5) cabernet sauvignon 

Varietal: cabernet sauvignon | Price: $20.95 Cdn | Winery: J. Lohr Estates | wikipedia icon | Wine Website: Seven Oaks Cabernet Sauvignon | Vintage: 2007 | Region: Estrella Hills, Paso Robles California | LCBO No: Vintages 656561 | Bar Code: 89121 28812 | Alcohol: 13.5%

Description

I am not particularly a fan of cabernet sauvignon wines. This one is an exception, and one of the better cabernet sauvignons I’ve tasted. It has a nice, subtle nose. I enjoyed its intense, yet creamy, spicy, vanilla texture and taste. Like most low priced cabernet sauvignons it initially had a wee bit too much alcohol flavour in the finish for my taste. But that disappeared over time (see ‘story’ section below). According to the label it:

… has aromas and bouquets of cherry, blackberry, violets and vanilla.

The LCBO Website describes the wine as follows:

Every time Vintages released this wine, it disappeared from store shelves at lightning speed! So we decided to make it an Essential to ensure that it’s always available and you’re never disappointed. Aged in oak for more than a year, this densely coloured red is packed with intense aromas of black cherry, blackcurrant, cedar, vanilla, and spices. Full-bodied and sweet-centred, this Cabernet will pair beautifully with roasted or grilled red meats.

Note: This wine is not to be confused with the pricier $39.95 2006 vintage of the same name. I have not yet tasted it. That wine was originally sold in Toronto for $19.95 (see this Toronto Life review). Perhaps it would be a good idea to purchase a case of the 2007 vintage if the price rise for the 2006 vintage is any indication.


Story

This wine was recommended to me by my nephew Michael Kalistchuk. Because it is an LCBO Essential, it is easy to find in any LCBO at the moment. It was smack dab at the front when I walked into my local LCBO last week.

Like other wines, it may need to decant a tad to lower the initial, mild alcohol after-taste. After the first glass I used the inert argon gas preservation technique described in my ‘How to Preserve Opened Bottles of Wine’ post to keep it overnight.

When I reopened the bottle the next evening, it tasted better than it did the first night. I compared it (taste-tested it side by side) against my [Yellow Tail] Shiraz touch-stone wine. Admittedly an unfair comparison but, since I drink more [Yellow Tail] than any other single wine, this gives me a good basis to compare wines. It was significantly better the second day in every measure – spicier, deeper, smoother.

I then poured the remaining half bottle into a smaller wine bottle (another preservation technique described in my ‘How to Preserve Opened Bottles of Wine’ post). I tried it once again on the third night and it was better still than the prior two nights. This wine is a winner.

In the coming days I intend to taste-test it against my go-to cabernet sauvignon – Wolfblass Yellow Label. I’ll update this post after I do.

Conclusion

This is quite a good cabernet sauvignon for the price. I could, of course, recommend it even more highly at a lower price – perhaps around the $16.50 to $18 mark. At $20.95, it is still worth investigating – particularly if you enjoy cabernet sauvignon and wines similar in taste to California zinfandels as I do. Perhaps we’ll see a price decrease given the recently rising Canadian dollar.

Front Label
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Back Label
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