The 12 Best Cabernet Sauvignon You Should Drink in 2022

Cabernet Sauvignon
This is our review of the 12 Best Cabernet Sauvignon you should drink this year. Enjoy!
Cabernet Sauvignon is the most widely planted grape in the world. You can find it as a single varietal or blended with other grapes.
 
It’s known for its intense black fruit and green bell pepper aromas. It’s able to age extremely well thanks to its high acidity and tannins.
  
Have you ever found yourself staring at many Cabernet Sauvignon bottles wondering which one you would like best?
 
After an extensive research, we have picked a selection of the 12 best Cabernet Sauvignon you can find right now.
 
As always we try our best to find high quality wine that offers great value for money and I must confess I’m quite happy with the research and work done. 
 
We have categorized them by regions, price point, etc.. and added an extensive buying guide so that you have all you need to make an informed decision.
 
Our best value bottle selection for you is Hall Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2017.
 
If you are after the best overall bottle, our recommendation is Shafer Hillside Select Cabernet Sauvignon.
 
You’ll find the table of content below. Let’s start with the review!
4.7/5

Vivino’s tips: 100 by Wine Advocate (2016 Vintage) | Featured in Vivino’s 2020 Wine Style Awards: Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon (2012 Vintage)

Region: United Stated, Stages Leap District

Tasting notes: Blackberry, Dark fruit, Cherry, Oak, Vanilla, Chocolate, Leather, Licorice.

I can just state two facts to demonstrate how outstanding this wine is. Shafer Hillside Select Cabernet Sauvignon 2016 is rated 4.7/5 stars amongst nearly 8000 Vivino’s users. And yes, that’s impressive, in case you wonder.

Expect aromas and flavors of dark cherry, black coffee, sweet vanilla and wet forest floor with rose petal, cranberry, blueberry, oregano, and sage.

This wine is perfectly balanced, silky, with smooth tannins, complex and elegant. In the words of Robert Parker, “One of the world’s, as well as Napa’s, most profound Cabernet Sauvignons.”

4.3/5

Vivino’s tips: “It’s Time to Jump on the Hall Bandwagon,” Robert Parker Has Said, “As They Are Doing Everything Right, and Their Wines Are Among the Most Exciting Being Made in the World Today.”

Region: United States, Napa Valley.

Tasting notes:
Black fruit, Plum, Cherry, Oak, Tobacco, Vanilla, Leather, Earthy, Smoke, Pepper.

This rich and complex Cabernet shows aromas of black cherry, vanilla and mocha with hints of plum and cassis.

Similar flavors carry though on the concentrated palate that is framed by balanced acid and ample plush tannins that lead to a long lingering finish.

There’s a reason why it’s in the “Best Value” section. This is one of those great bottles you can find at an incredible price and that you can’t miss!

This is the perfect occasion for either familiarize with the Napa Valley style, if you are new to it, or to start refining your palate or simply treat yourself well.

Hurry up and stack up a few of these in your cellar before it runs out of stock.

4.1/5

Vivino’s tips: Ranks #3 in Best wines under $20 right now

Region: United States, Paso Robles

Tasting notes: Blackberry, Plum, Cherry, Oak, Eucalyptus.

It ranks #3 in the Best wines under $20. Seriously, what else do you need to know?😄

But ok, if you still need a bit more details to be convinced then here you go, this is what you should expect from this wine.

Black cherry, plum, cherry, cedar and eucalyptus, and displays undertones of briary blackberry and wet gravel. Full bodied, polished tannins and elegant finish.

4.5/5

Vivino’s tips: Oldest vintage avaiable

Region: United States, Napa Valley

Tasting notes:
Blackberry, Plum, Cherry, Raspberry, Vanilla, Oak, Chocolate, Earthy, Spice, Licorice.

It has dark, scarlet red color, with powerful aromas of sweet ripe cabernet grapes.

Initial impressions are fantastically appealing, brooding to expansive textural sensations of finely grained cacao tannins.

The whole of the wine is balanced, rich, expressive and impressively complex. The backbone of fine tannin and sweet ripeness is a carry-over from perfectly mature fruit.

It ain’t cheap, I know, but quality has a price, and to us this wine is simply outstanding. 

4.2/5

Vivino’s tips: Good value for money. Similar wines usually cost 61% more.

Region: United States, Khights Valley.

Tasting notes: Blackberry, Plum, Cherry, Raspberry, Oak, Vanilla, Chocolate

The Knights Valley has a vibrant fruit core, hints of brown spice and pink peppercorns, and a lingering finish of ripe black fruit. It is usually priced under $30, a bargain!

A bit of Merlot was added to this wine to round out the mid-palate and a touch of Cabernet Franc lifts the aromatics of the wine and delivers an elegant finish.

4.2/5

Vivino’s tips: Good value for money. Similar wines usually cost 31% more.

Region: United States, Columbia Valley

Tasting notes: Black Cherry, Blackberry, Plum,  Cherry, Vanilla, Oak, Chocolate, Cocoa, Tobacco.

Cabernet from this iconic 40-year-old vineyard consistently delivers power, structure and rich concentrated black fruit.

The wine delivers black cherry, chocolate notes with typical Cold Creek weight and user friendly power.

4.4/5

Vivino’s tips: Editor’s note: “Left Bank 2005 Super Second Growth! Aged For You in France! Collector Must-Have. Wowed the Critics, Earning Double 97-Point Scores.”

Region: France, Saint-Estèphe

Tasting notes: Cassis, Blackberry, Blackcurrant, Cherry, Leather, Earthy, Tobacco, Oak, Cedar, Vanilla, Licorice, Pepper.

If you love the French style, you must try it. It will blow you away! If you collect wine, keep an eye on it, I’d secure few bottles if I were you. 

It has a fine and elegant robe with a beautifully intense and dark garnet. The nose, powerful and harmonious, is pleasantly woody.

Aerated, it reveals lightly toasted aromas, followed with hints of ripe fruits and licorice.

The palate is full and soft with tight tannins and a light sweetness. The finish is long and harmonious.

4.7/5

Vivino’s tips: Great value for money. Similar wines usually cost 2 times as much.

Region: Italy, Toscana

Tasting notes: Blackberry, Plum, Black Cherry, Raspberry, Oak, Tobacco, Chocolate, Vanilla, Leather, Earthy, Licorice, Pepper.

I could simply say that I’m Italian and I know my stuff. I could also add that for Vivino, similar wines usually cost twice as much and that critics love it. But by now, I know that you love details and so here you go.

Tignanello is the first and most consistent of the great Super Tuscans.

The first Sangiovese to be aged in barriques, the first modern Tuscan wine to be blended with non-traditional varieties, and one of the first red Chianti Classico wines made without any white grapes.

Tignanello is an iconic Italian masterpiece and one of the cornerstone bottlings of the Antinori estate.

Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate describes it “retro but classic personality” in a 98-point review.

“Cherry blossoms and roses perfume the delicate blackberry, black cherry, and blueberry fruit, supported by refined, sophisticated tannins.” Are you convinced by now? 😁

4.3/5

Vivino’s tips: Good value for money. Similar wines usually cost 45% more.

Region: Australia, McLaren Vale.

Tasting notes: Blackberries, Cherry Vanilla, Chocolate, Oak, Pepper, Mint.

The wine is layered with black berries, dark chocolate and hints of mint. It has a rich creaminess across the palate and leaves you with a spice and coffee finish.

If you like the Australian style, go for this one!

4.5/5

Vivino’s tips: Editor’s Pick. | Good value for money. Similar wines usually cost 88% more.
| Ranks #1 in Bestsellers in California.

Region: United States, Paso Robles

Tasting notes: Blackberry, Plum, Cherry, Vanilla, Oak, Chocolate, Leather, Smoke, Pepper.

For once I let the others do the talking. Here is what Vivino’s Editor think about this wine. Ah, btw, we are talking about a Cabernet Sauvignon priced under $50…😲

“It is widely considered to be the best Cabernet Sauvignon in Paso Robles. The 2019 follow-up to Austin Hope’s smash-hit Cab is just as exciting as the previous release (4.3 ★ out the gate).

With inky dark fruit accented by savory spice, smoke, and earth, this silky-smooth Cab is the ultimate crowd-pleaser.

Though it’s a big wine that packs a punch, it’s also impeccably balanced, with bright acidity and luscious, mouth-filling tannins.

Vivino user Marshall M. calls the Austin Hope Cab “one of the best wines I’ve had at this price point,” and Kendall M. says, “I’d pay 30-40 bucks more for a wine of this quality.” “

4.5/5

Vivino’s tips: Great value for money. Similar wines usually cost 2 times as much.
| Ranks #1 in Best wines between $40 and $80. 

Region: United States, Napa Valley

Tasting notes: Blackberry, Plum, Cherry, Oak, Vanilla, Chocolate, Leather, Earthy, Smoke.

Let’s start by saying that this wine and vintage ranks #1 in Vivino’s Best wines between $40 and $80. On top of it, similar wines cost usually twice as much.

Have I intrigued you? Good, then know as well that
it’s rated 4.5 stars amongst over 4000+ Vivino’s users. That’s pretty good!
 
The goal of Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars is to create wine with with balance, complexity and harmony. Mission accomplished, if you ask me.

If you pick the 2018 vintage, it’s best you wait another couple of years, as the tannins might still be too strong.
4.6/5

Vivino’s tips: 100 by Wine Enthusiast (2016 Vintage) | 96 by Wine Enthusiast (2017 Vintage) | Featured in Vivino’s 2018 Wine Style Awards: Tuscan Red (1998 Vintage)

Region: Italy, Toscana

Tasting notes: Blackberry, Plum, Cherry, Oak, Tobacco, Chocolate, Leather, Licorice, Violet.

We are talking about luxury wine, so not for everyone. And to be honest, for the quality that this wine offers, the price is still pretty competitive compared to other luxury bottles.

If you can afford it, it will be an unbelievable experience. Don’t take just my words for it, there’s unanimity across the industry and experts.

Here is what James Suckling think. He rated 98 points the 2018 vintage and this was his comment: ” Very aromatic and lively on the nose with currants, fresh herbs, white pepper and cherry blossoms.

Full-bodied with a vertical, multilayered structure and ultra fine tannins. Velvety texture. Extremely long and focused. Complex and succulent.

This is the smallest production of Solaia ever. Great length. This is a beautifully complex red that’s open now, but needs another three to four years to show even more of its excellence. “

Buying Guide to Cabernet Sauvignon

It’s not just about which Cabernet Sauvignon you should buy.

There are other important aspects like how to serve it, food pairings, and much more.

The below buying guide will give you a detailed overview of all these topics.

Cabernet Sauvignon Overview

Here you find an overview of where Cabernet Sauvignon is most commonly planted.

Grape

Cabernet Sauvignon

ABV

13%–15%

Main Regions

France: Bordeaux, South of France
USA: California (Napa Valley, Sonoma)

Other Regions

Australia
Chile
Italy
New Zealand
South Africa
USA: Washington

Grape

Cabernet Sauvignon

ABV

13%–15%

Main Regions

France: Bordeaux, South of France
USA: California (Napa Valley, Sonoma)

Other Regions

Australia
Chile
Italy
New Zealand
South Africa
USA: Washington

Cabernet Sauvignon Taste Profile

These are some of the most common aromas and flavors of Cabernet Sauvignon.

Color

Deep Ruby

Nose

Blackcurrant, Black Raspberry, Black Cherry
Leather
Nutmeg
Baking Spice
Cedar

Palate

Violets, Mint
Black Fruit
Green Bell Pepper,
Graphite
Dry
High Acidity
High Tannins
Full Body

Color

Deep Ruby

Nose

Blackcurrant, Black Raspberry, Black Cherry
Leather
Nutmeg
Baking Spice
Cedar

Palate

Violets, Mint
Black Fruit
Green Bell Pepper,
Graphite
Dry
High Acidity
High Tannins
Full Body

Cabernet Sauvignon Food Pairing

These are some food pairing suggestions for Cabernet Sauvignon.

Appetizer

Mushroom Pizza,
Peppery Souces,
Stew

Meat

Rich Grilled Meats,
Marinated Ribeye Steak,
Braised Short Ribs,
Stroganoff

Fish

-

Cheese

Blue Cheese
Semi-Hard (Comte)

Appetizer

Mushroom Pizza,
Peppery Souces,
Stew

Meat

Rich Grilled Meats,
Marinated Ribeye Steak,
Braised Short Ribs,
Stroganoff

Fish

-

Cheese

Blue Cheese
Semi-Hard (Comte)

Serve and Store Cabernet Sauvignon

Here you find some useful tips on how to serve and store Cabernet Sauvignon.

Decant

1 to 2 hrs

Glass

Bordeaux

Serve at

59 - 64 °F
15 - 18 °C

Store for

Up to 5 years
10+ years finest bottles only

Decant

1 to 2 hrs

Glass

Bordeaux

Serve at

59 - 64 °F
15 - 18 °C

Store for

Up to 5 years
10+ years finest bottles only

Cabernet Sauvignon Styles

Regions and winemaking techniques influence Cabernet Sauvignon taste profiles. Here is a quick overview for some regions and what to expect:

  • Australia (Margaret River) flavors: bay leaf, black plum, spice (white pepper), graphite, chocolate.

  • California (Napa) flavors: mint, black currant, blackberry, spice (black pepper), graphite, tobacco.

  • Chile (Maipo Valley, Colchagua Valley) flavors: black cherry, blackberry, fig, baking spices.

  • France flavors: violets, black currant, plum, graphite, tobacco, licorice. Cabernet Sauvignon is typically blended with other grapes, aka “Bordeaux Blend”. If you prefer Cabernet Sauvignon dominant wine, pick bottles from the Left Bank: 
    • Médoc AOC [1]
    • Haut-Médoc AOC (Margaux AOC, Pauillac AOC)
    • Graves AOC (Pessac-Léognan AOC).

Our Verdict

Cabernet Sauvignon is the most widely planted grape in the world. You can find it as a single varietal or blended with other grapes.
 
If you have been through the buying guide, you should have a pretty good idea of how to navigate the Cabernet Sauvignon world.
 
At the same time, you have probably realized by now, that there’s a huge selection, many styles, and various price points.
 
The good news is that you can get very high quality usually at a good price if you know where to look!
 
That’s why proper guidance comes in handy. We hope our guide was helpful in this regard.
 
Our best value bottle selection for you is for Hall Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2017. If you are after the best overall bottle, our recommendation is Shafer Hillside Select Cabernet Sauvignon.
 
As always, make sure to serve your Cabernet Sauvignon at the right temperature and with the proper glass.

What to do next?

Be sure to serve your Cabernet Sauvignon at the right temperature. Read our wine tasting guide to enhance your tasting experience and taste like the pro!

Alternatively, why don’t you check out our guides on Merlot, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon vs Merlot, other red wines or Champagne?

FAQ

Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about Cabernet Sauvignon.

What does Cabernet Sauvignon mean?

Cabernet Sauvignon means “wild” Cabernet. “Sauvignon” is a French word that derives from “souvage”, i.e. wild, since the vines are reminiscent of wild grapevines.

What is Cabernet Sauvignon history?

Cabernet Sauvignon is an offspring of Sauvignon Blanc and Cabernet Franc [2] originated in the 17th century.

Its origin was discovered in 1996, at the UC Davis Department of Viticulture and Enology [3].

It has been popular in the Médoc region in France since the 18th century. 1976 is an important date for California’s wine.

That’s the date on which Stags’ Leap Cabernet Sauvignon won the blind taste test in Paris beating a top French wine.

From this day on, Napa Cabernet Sauvignon gained tremendous popularity.

Today Cabernet Sauvignon is the most widely planted grape in the world.

Where does Cabernet Sauvignon grow best?

Cabernet Sauvignon grows best in moderate to warm climates to help the long ripening of the grape.

When unripe, Cabernet Sauvignon is unpleasantly high in tannins. This is why in cooler areas, it is generally blended with other grapes.

Blending and oak aging are the common techniques used to soften Cabernet Sauvignon high tannins.

Here are the typical taste profiles depending on the climate: 

  • Cool (Bordeaux): green bell pepper, mint, black currant, and cedar.
  • Moderate/Warm (California): black cherry, black currant, black olive.
  • Very Hot (Chile): flavors become more cooked and “jammy

When is the perfect time to drink Cabernet Sauvignon?

Are you hosting or going to a dinner with high-fat food and big umami flavors? Cabernet Sauvignon is a perfect match for it!

Is Cabernet Sauvignon sweet?

Cabernet Sauvignon is not sweet. It is a dry wine which means it contains less than 15 g/L, or sugar per liter. Learn more about wine sweetness level here.

When is the International Cabernet Sauvignon day?

The International Cabernet Sauvignon day is the Thursday before the US Labor Day weekend each year.

Why does Cabernet Sauvignon age well?

Cabernet Sauvignon’s ability to age well comes from his naturally high level of acidity and tannins.

They work as natural preservatives and allow very good and outstanding bottles to mature for ages.

What is one of the most famous Cabernet Sauvignon blend?

One of the most famous Cabernet Sauvignon blend is Bordeaux wine. Cabernet Sauvignon is part of the so called six “Bordeaux Varietals”.

These are: Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Carménère, Malbec, Merlot, Petit Verdot.

What are Super Tuscan wines?

Super Tuscan” wines are yet another famous Cabernet Sauvignon blend with Merlot and Syrah

“Super Tuscan” is the name used to differentiate them from the other Tuscan wine made with indigenous grapes, like Chianti.

What’s Cabernet Sauvignon's typical price range?

There’s a Cabernet Sauvignon for every pocket. The price varies considerably and quickly reach $1,000+ for the finest bottles. 

  • Good quality Cabernet Sauvignon at around $15-$30. Look for Australia, Chile, California (Sonoma), South Africa, and Washington bottles.

  • Up to $100 you can get great bottles from California, Australia, and Italy.

  • As you go for French and Napa finest bottles the price will quickly skyrocket towards $1,000 and above.

What was the highest price paid for a Cabernet Sauvignon?

Do you know what’s the highest price paid for Cabernet Sauvignon to date? Well, sit tight….

It’s $500,000 for an imperial size bottle (6L) of 1992 Screaming Eagle sold at a charity auction in 2000.

Where does the typical green bell pepper aroma in a Cabernet Sauvignon come from?

Cabernet Sauvignon green bell pepper aroma comes from the methoxypyrazine compound.

Why You Can Trust Us?

Wine is our passion and our mission is to make the world of wine more accessible to you and by doing so enhancing your experience.

We try our best to find high quality wines that offer great value for money so that they have a light weight on your wallet as well!🤩

Finally, all the content we publish on this site has been written or overseen by wine certificate holders, which ensures a high quality content.

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