The 2010 Leese-Fitch Cabernet Sauvignon is 79% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Alicante Bouschet, 5% Cabernet Franc, 4% Merlot, 4% Syrah, 1% Carignane and 1% Petite Sirah. If you are asking yourself, why with all the different grapes used, is this wine called a Cabernet Sauvignon? In California, as long as 75% of the grapes are of one varietal, the bottle can be labeled as that predominate grape. With inexpensive wines, especially with inexpensive Cabernet Sauvignon, adding a little bit of this and a lit bit of that can really add some zip to the wine that was not there in the first place. The Cabernet Sauvignon grapes were sourced from the northern interior valley of California’s Central Valley, Lodi, Paso Robles and Clarksburg. The Alicante Bouschet, Carignane and Petite Sirah are from Lodi, the Merlot and Syrah are from Paso Robles and the Cabernet Franc is from Lake County. They seem to have gone through quite an effort to find the grapes for this bottling. They mention French and American oak was used in this wine, but there is no mention of oak barrels. This is one of the labels owned by The Other Guys, Inc, who also produce Pennywise, Plungerhead, MooBuzz and Hey Mambo and a few others and they are a branch of the noted Sebastiani wine family. The alcohol content is 13.5%, you should be able to find this wine for around $11.
The color is dark black cherry red with a pink, almost clear halo. The nose is plum, French vanilla, oak plank and blueberry. This is a Cabernet Sauvignon that is definitely not flavor challenged and has a soft, plush mouthfeel. It tastes of ripe black cherry, along with a little tart, almost sour cherry, milk chocolate, POM Wonderful and a touch of creamy vanilla. There isn’t a big transition on the mid palate, but some dusty tannins and cranberry juice do pop up. The tannins and the acidity are well balanced by the fruit flavors and the finish is strong and long.
The 2010 Leese-Fitch Cabernet Sauvignon is a Zinfandel or Shiraz lover’s type of Cabernet. Big, bold, fruit forward, with a lot going on in the glass, maybe not something that Burgundian wine affectionados would want anything to do with, but the other 95% of us wine drinkers can find a use for this wine. This is a Cab made for firing up the grill and doing what you do best to chicken, pork or beef.