Bonterra 2001 North Coast Cabernet Sauvignon ($16.99)
Very dark reddish-purple, almost black. Good cassis-blackcurrant aromas add a delicate herbal nuance and earthy back notes of black coffee and dark chocolate. A burst of blackcurrant fruit on the palate is wrapped up in lemon-squirt acidity and smooth tannins. Surprisingly "Bordeaux-like" in style for a California Cabernet, and that's a plus. US Importer: (Nov 9, 2004)

FOOD MATCH: Making do with a quick dinner based on what's-in-the-fridge, I paired it successfully with grilled artisanal bratwurst. It would be a more natural partner, though, with rare steaks or lamb chops.

WEB LINK: http://www.bonterra.com/

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