2010 Concannon Cabernet Sauvignon Selected Vineyards California 13% $10

A little truffly over-ripeness greets the nose along with clear note of candied cinnamon, vanilla, and spicy red fruits. This is smooth but rather transparent in the mouth with lots of soft tannins and good acidity supporting simple and slightly cooked flavors of raspberry and cherry. The oak is playing a supporting role here as well, adding some spice and cedary character to the midpalate along with a vanilla accent note on the moderately long chocolate covered cherry finish. The tannins here are a little coarse but the flavors and texture of the wine are quite pleasant even if there is a hint of sticky sweetness here. 84pts

2011 Greystone Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon California 13.5% $10

Quite ripe and a bit heavy on the nose though there is a touch of sage here accenting the black currant fruit that is draped with some spicy oak and faint dried herbs. medium bodied and while the flavors run a bit towards the over-ripe with an edge of prune here the texture is light and fresh. This is very typical modern cabernet and well done at that but it is also on the simple side with a touch of mintiness on the backend that leads to a short and slight chewy finish. Soft, easy drinking, and a bit of a mini modern California Cabernet. the over-ripe flavors are off-putting to me but I can see the appeal of this wine. 84pts

2012 Santa Julia Cabernet Sauvignon Organic Mendoza Argentina 13.5% $10

Herbal, leathery and soil driven on the nose with a nice base of soft blue and red fruits. Rather lighter bodied than most Cabernets at this price point, this offers up some softly rustic tannins and good acidity in support of earthy and mineral tinged black currant flavors. This is fresh, easy to drink, and not particularly fruit driven though at the same time it lacks some depth of flavor and those looking for a fruity wine will be disappointed. The finish shows a little toughness and the tannins in particular are driving the spicy length. 83pts

2011 Araucano Cabernet Sauvignon Reserva Valle de Colchagua Chile 13.5% $12

Smoky, herbal and a bit funky on the nose with plenty of dried herb notes and something vaguely sweet like tobacco accenting the raspberry fruit with it’s dried peach and dried orange top notes. Soft and fruity in the mouth, this is very easy to drink with supple tannins and integrated acids allowing the simple core of slightly peachy red cherry and raspberry fruit to take center stage. That orange peel on the nose appears on the backend in the mouth and adds some needed freshness before this drops off on the short finish. 83pts

2011 Mirassou Cabernet Sauvignon California 13% $12

Sweet jammy blueberry and blackberry fruit greets the nose followed by sweet wood spice, coffee grinds and some dried herb notes. This is pretty low acid and also shows slightly cooked black cherry and pruny flavors of over-ripe fruit. The mid-palate drops out a bit though this continues to deliver rather powerful if slightly cooked black fruits framed with a hint of herbaceousness and a little sweet wood spice. The finish is short, tough and a little sweet. 80pts