Versatile Napa Cab: 2017 Pope Valley Winery Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

A versatile and extremely enjoyable Napa Cab in a post-modern style: not a fruit-bomb and not over-oaked.

Plummy blackberry aromas with the heat of the sun-baked earth in the aroma, also notes of cocoa, leather and wild mountain herbs from this Eakle Ranch estate-grown fruit. Medium-hearty body with fine-grain tannins strewn throughout, along with more dark red fruit and some cocoa nib. This lasts into the medium-short finish, which shows a slight tinge of alcohol and a makes it clear this wine has a fair bit of acidity too.

FOOD PAIRING: remarkably versatile with everything from vegetarian and tomato-based dishes to simple meat or grilled sausages.

Recommended: 90 points – BSE

WHO: Pope Valley Winery

WHAT: 92% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Petit Verdot, 4% Malbec

WHERE: Napa Valley, California

HOW MUCH: $42 (media sample)