Tasting – Substance Cabernet Sauvignon

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September 20, 2018.

Substance – Cabernet Sauvignon – Benton City, Washington, United States – 2016 – $16.99

This Cabernet Sauvignon was purchased at Corkscrew Wine & Spirits in Norman, Oklahoma and 14.5% alcohol by volume. I knew I wanted to purchase a Cabernet Sauvignon when I entered the shop, because I had recently had a few Cabs that I really liked. The worker at the wine shop immediately helped me pick out not only this Cab, but also a Pinot Gris that I will talk about later. He pointed me to the Substance Cabernet Sauvignon and said that it wasn’t worth entertaining the idea of other Cabs on their shelves. That might have been a little dramatic, but he was a college student too so it clearly is a popular wine among young adults. It was within my price range, so I didn’t think twice. Now that I’ve tasted it, I know I will be hooked for a while. And not to mention that it’s from Washington – the Columbia Valley, where the best grapes grown are cabernet.

From the official review on their website, winesofsubstance.com: Classic Cabernet Sauvignon. Currant, blackberry, cigar box with touches of chocolate, cedar and pencil lead. Full flavored & just so damn good. I should raise the price.

That got my attention. Pencil lead?

I said, “that’s something I cannot agree with…” until… wait is that pencil lead? I never could have pinpointed that, but it does make sense because of the almost-metallic taste in the middle. But then again, my background in psychology tells me that I only taste that because I was told to taste that. But whatever the case may be, this wine is very complex and unique. This wine struck me with a scent I have never attached to wine before — cologne. A slightly musty cologne but still one that is sweet, like blackberry. This wine has a high alcohol content which can also be detected in the scent, adding to the must. The first sip was juicy but tart, leaving my tongue and throat slightly dry but quenched by the jammy sweetness.  Its a paradox I cannot explain but I really like it! I am drinking it without any food but later tonight I may have some with a meal. More than anything, I appreciate the high tannins because I am so used to drinking less tannic, sweeter red wines. My pallet is already evolving. Pretty cool.

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