2007 Overlake Cabernet Sauvignon

 2007 Overlake Cabernet SauvignonPrice: $5.99 @ Trader Joe’s

What They Said:

Nothing to be found. Looks like you are stuck with me on this one…

What I Think:

This one came recommended a month or so ago via a Trader Joe’s (often my beaten path in South San Francisco) cashier who saw me lugging out a case plus of wine and thought I was missing the boat. Y’all know me, love recommendations. We headed over to the aisle to hunt this one down but alas it was out of stock. Fast forward three weeks, headed home from the airport and need to do grocery shopping so headed back here. Perusing the wine aisle and sha-bam there it is. Decent looking label, Lake County which I have some loves for (see Beringer Clear Lake Zin and Dynamic Lake County Red) plus a personal recommendation and three bottles are quickly in the cart. Big buy for me before tasting a drop…

Obviously with expectations high what I needed is for someone to tell me this sucked right before I drank it to get those back in line. Alas no one was available to assist. The nose is typical of a $6 Trader Joe’s Cabernet consisting of darker fruit and oak. The front of the palate initially seems a bit flabby but quickly pulls itself together. The mid palate show nice balance with rich, dark fruit holding throughout which all makes it to the finish where a hint of black pepper is added to the mix. 14.75% alcohol? Are you kidding me? No heat and virtually no tannins. Amazing at $6! My only word of warning (given I’ve consumed 2 of these bottles already) think twice before crossing this one with spicy food (tacos) as that was a pairing that didn’t work, save it for simpler meat dishes

This is the best fruit forward sub $6 Trader Joe’s can since the XS. The “fruit forward” disclaimer came due to my Grape Madness experience with the Fetzer (which upset Sterling in the opening round) which was much more subtle and is worth a try as well. Trying to say what you see is what you get with this one, l don’t expect complexity or layers. That said, if you are interested in a nice, everyday, fruit forward drinker this may be one for you. It is for me, I have a ½ case minimum in mind for me next time I see this one. Sure to make my next Top 10 list which you should be seeing in the next 48 hours.

Rating: Bulk Buy

Additional Thoughts: Lake County: Been a big fan lately. Look for good values out of this region in the next few years as it is relatively “undiscovered”. Had some nice wines from there and am keen to explore further. Next two tasting trips, after Greece (did I mention I leave in less than a week? Any tips?) are here and to Lodi/El Dorado County… Anyone have recommendations for either?

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7 thoughts on “2007 Overlake Cabernet Sauvignon

  1. Lodi: Make sure to check out Ripken Vineyards. They grow grapes for a lot of well known wineries and make small quantities of their own terrific wines. Famous for their Viognier, and a nice line of Spanish style reds, their current Under the Sea Syrah (2003 I think) was the best Syrah I have tasted in the past year. I don’t think any of their wines are filtered/fined. Nice folks too!

    Michael David is also a must-stop. Good restaurant and fruit stand share the tasting room, and my young son loved feeding the animals out back (sounds cheesy, but fun when the family is bored with you being a cork-dork)!

    The guys at m2 are doing good things – lots of high QPR vino there.

    Finally, St. Amant makes awesome Tempranillo. Never been able to drop in when they are open, but make an appointment – you won’t be disappointed.

  2. Hi Jason. Here are some Lodi recommendations from 2 recent trips: 1) Borra***— excellent blends, Barbera, and old vine Zin 2) Heritage Oak— newish winery with sophisticated Zins and Syrahs 3) Jessie’s Grove— nice range of very old vine Zins 4) Ripken— experimental, playful wines 5) Macchia— some excellent power-wines (Zin, Barb), but kind of cheesy (silly wine names and tacky gift shop tasting room). Also, everyone kept steering us toward Michael David which makes cheaper, widely marketed wines like 7 Deadly Zins and Earthquake Cab. I didn’t care for ANY of their wines, but they did have several brands and a wide price range, so they might interest you. Have fun.

  3. @hdfixer Thanks for the tips. Ripken sounds great, what I love about the area is all of the random Spanish/Italian varietals that come out of the region. Given I’ll have two kids in tow perhaps Michael David would be worthwhile.

    @Josh Borra with three stars, sold. Another vote for Ripken.

    Thanks both for the list. I’ll have to get this on the calendar. First I am off to Greece for a long vacation!

  4. Definitely do come to Ripken. We’re small and fun. Very hands-on. Most of the time its either the grower or the winemaker behind the counter. We make a large number of wines in limited quantities. Sometimes as little as a single barrel. All our wines are released to the wineclub first so some things sell out quickly. The El Matidor Tempranillo is great. Alicante Bouschet is uncommon but delicious. If you like sweet wines the Late Harvest Viognier is amazing. We sold out of our 04 Vintage Port and recently released the 05 – also great. If you know what you want to try email us before you come and we’ll be sure to pour it that weekend. Here’s the Ripken Winery in 3D.

    I’ll second the Michael David recommendation. Its great for kids because they’ve got farm animals out back, beautiful gardens and a delicious cafe. Usually there is fresh produce for sale too, but lately they’ve been renovating the tasting area and the produce hasn’t been out. I think they just finished the renovation so now would be a great time to visit again.

    Lucas is a great stop, they have a reputation for fantastic zin.

    The Lodi-Woodbridge Wine and Visitor’s Center is a good stop too b/c they pour wines from a number of different Lodi Wineries.

  5. @Ryan Ripken Thanks for the invite. I am going to pick a weekend in the next month or two to make it out that way. Once I get that squared away I will certainly be in touch…

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  7. Grocery Outlet in Oakland had the Wildhurst S.B. at $4.99. I bought a case and it is excellent. They did have the cab but it went quickly – They may have a few bottles of s.b. left. Also if there are any (blue) bottles of White Tattoo left, get it. Mix of gewurtz and riesling and a great hot day quaffer.

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