Apparently, cabernet sauvignon is the healthiest of the grapes to drink. It carries the right amount of scientific thingies to promote good gut health and ageing, so I thought, you know what, it’s worth a column and 30 seconds of anyone’s time.

Cabernet is the most planted grape of all and its spiritual home base is, of course, Bordeaux where it combines with anything up to four other specific grapes to make the finest wines in the world. Ironically however, Bordeaux is where I’ve found it’s least likely to show ripe cassis flavours, its trademark in the wine world, but then it is generally used in a blend in that region.

It’s also now planted all over the world, for it seems that wherever wine is made, there’s room for cabernet and in many cases, single varietal gems, especially in the Napa valley, California. I visited several vineyards in the Napa a few months before the first lockdown and while the cabernets were outstanding, so were the prices, which typically started above $80 a bottle up to several hundred. Cabernet may be the king of grapes but it’s also the king of prices.


Cannonberg Cabernet Sauvignon, South Africa

Dark cherries on the nose with plums and cassis on a very silky palate. An excellent wine for this price.

Pop Wines Glasgow £12


Jim Barry, Cover Drive Cabernet, Australia

This is a corker, but to be honest, I don’t think I’ve ever tasted a poor wine from Jim Barry vineyards. Ripe almost sweet blackcurrants with hints of spicy oak on the finish.

Majestic £15.99 per bottle or £9.99 mixed six


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