The 2008 Masked Rider Six Gun Cabernet Sauvignon is 76% Cabernet Sauvignon (in California a wine has to be a minimum of 75% of one grape to be labeled a single varietal), 14% Petit Verdot and 10% mixed red grapes sourced from more than one California grape growing AVA. Masked Rider is one of Bronco Wine Company (2 Buck Chuck) non Trader Joe’s wines. A Cabernet Sauvignon with 4 years of bottle age, this is a 2008 vintage, does not usually sell for $9. Masked Rider Winery, “cellared and bottled” this wine, meaning they only aged and bottled the wine, the grapes were grown and the wine was produced by an unnamed 3rd party. The wine was aged in American oak barrels and the alcohol content is 13.5%.
The color is very, very purple. The nose is pretty good, red berries, chocolate, a little new leather coat, peppermint and French vanilla. This is a soft, smooth Cab with a nice rough edge on the mid palate. Black cherry and plums lead things off mixed with cocoa powder and strawberry. The wine transitions to pepper, oak spice, tart tangerine and then a light touch of vanilla creme. The tannins (the tannins do show up on the mid palate and finish, like a Cabernet Sauvignon should) are balanced and the acidity is well under control for a ten buck wine. And the finish hangs around for a respectable length of time.
The Masked Rider Cabernet Sauvignon would make a pretty good summertime wine, not too heavy, good fruit flavors, it has more than enough structure to stand up to grilled meats and drinks just fine on its own. This is a “no excuses” under $10 Cabernet, there are no off flavors, it is not too oaky and the alcohol isn’t too hot, it is just a solid everyday Cabernet Sauvignon.