Not just a wine of heroism

This is one of the very few Cabernet-based wines I buy with any regularity. It is usually quite fun, in a big sort of way, and people have assured me it ages to something quite lovely. I’ve got another bottle in my cellar so we’ll see about that.

Cabernet Sauvignon 2003, Moss Wood

The nose has a very powerful blackcurrant and cedar-wood aroma. It also seems pretty oaky and the high alcohol level really stands out. This smells like Claret++. The palate is certainly large-scale, bold and even heroic, but the tannic structure is really quite refined. The alcohol stands out a bit on the finish, as does the oak, but the fruit persists too and there is plenty of it. This may be big, but it is not a beast and I think it has reasonable balance for a wine of this size. I don’t really feel confident predicting how this will age, but the finely-grained tannins, reasonable acidity and good fruit levels suggest it should hang around at the very least. Given how much I am non-plussed by Cabernet and dislike high-alcohol wines in general, I am surprised to admit I really quite like this.

PS. Is it me or does the Moss Wood Cabernet label look quite a lot like the Pichon-Lalande label?

Compare and contrast these labels