The 2011 Carnivor Cabernet Sauvignon is 79% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Petite Sirah, 5% Merlot and 3% Cabernet Franc sourced from vineyards in more than one California grape growing AVA, but mainly from Lodi and the San Joaquin Valley (east of the San Francisco Bay in the Central Valley) in Northern California. Carnivor is one of E & J Gallo many, many wine brands. The Lodi AVA, best known for Zinfandel wines, is a warm grape growing region and produces ripe, concentrated grapes. This Cabernet received some sort of oak conditioning, the website is completely devoid of any useful information, except for a link telling you where the wine is sold locally. The alcohol content is 13.9%.
The color is dark and intense, it doesn’t look a lot like a Cabernet Sauvignon. The nose is ripe plums, eucalyptus, dusty chocolate powder, black cherry and a hint of French vanilla. This is a smooth, juicy and rich Cabernet Sauvignon. It starts with blackberry, raspberry, black Twizzlers, milk chocolate. The mid palate adds a soft touch of cinnamon spice and sweet cherry. The tannins are hidden in the mix and the acidity does not get in the way. The finish is full, rich and fairly lengthy.
If you are looking for an old school Napa Valley or Bordeaux Cabernet Sauvignon, the Carnivor Cab Sauv ain’t the bottle to grab. If you are looking for a rich, juicy, ripe Cabernet Sauvignon, then the Carnivor should be near the top of the list. There is not tons of complexity or depth, but there is tons of flavor. As for pairing suggestions, a pork roast or chops would do well, along with pot roast and fancy cheeseburgers. The Carnivor Cabernet Sauvignon is well suited for drinking while sitting around the fire pit on a cool fall evening.